Families remember missing kin, write letters to Pope Francis – Manila

Richard James Mendoza | Demotix

Families of ‘desaparecidos’, or victims of enforced disappearances, gather at Plaza Miranda in Manila, Philippines on All Souls’ Day to commemorate their kin who have disappeared. They also wrote letters in time for Pope Francis’ visit next year.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.




This slideshow requires JavaScript.


Families of victims of enforced disappearance or desaparacidos gathered in Plaza Miranda on All Souls’ Day to remember their loved ones, light candles and offer flowers. Under the Noynoy Aquino administration, there have been 21 victims of abduction perpetrated by state security forces and has since added up to the numbers of desaparacidos since the Marcos dictatorship. During the activity, families of desaparacidos wrote letters to Pope Francis asking for help to seek justice for their loved ones. According to Desaparacidos (Pamilya ng Desaparacidos para sa Katarungan), they have followed the statements of Pope Francis on justice and human rights. For them, it is an opportunity for the families to voice out the injustices and human rights violations in the Philippines.

The Pope will visit the Philippines on January 2015 to visit typhoon Yolanda ravaged areas in the Visayas.

Photos by Erika Cruz

RIMBAW(To Overcome) excerpt on James Balao

RIMBAW(To Overcome) excerpt on James Balao from Cordillera Human Rights Alliance on Vimeo.

September 17, 2013 marks the 5th year of the enforced disappearance of James Balao, founding member of the Cordillera Peoples Alliance.

Since that day, his family, friends, colleagues and human rights organizations searched for him trying to leave no stone unturned.

The continuous enforced disappearance of James portrays the injustice and impunity in our country. Despite difficulties, the family, friends and colleagues of James will continue the search. Peace and human rights advocates will not cease in calling for the immediate surfacing of James. We will search for him with the ever-heightening rage against injustices and human rights violations.

*Rimbaw (To Overcome) is a 32 min documentary on victims of human rights violations and their families.