Standoff in Lahad Datu : Engage in Dialogue Now with all stakeholders to resolve the crisis peacefully

JOINT STATEMENT OF MALAYSIAN-PHILIPPINE CSOs

 

Standoff in Lahad Datu : Engage in Dialogue Now with all stakeholders

to resolve the crisis peacefully

We the undersigned Civil Society organisations (CSOs) from Malaysia and Philippines are extremely concerned over the on-going standoff between the Malaysian security forces and followers of the Sultanate of Sulu’s heirs, Jamalul Kiram III at Lahad Datu, Sabah. We the CSOs, together with all individuals, organizations and networks, urgently call upon President Benigno S. Aquino III of the Philippines, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak of Malaysia and Sultan Jamalul Kiram III, to disavow all forms of violence, and instead support dialogue as the primary mechanism for a resolution to the siege.

 

We are very concerned and worried about the security of civilians in Lahad Datu, Semporna and the surrounding villages and we would like to see a peaceful solution to resolve this ongoing problem. According to media reports, at least sixty (60) people have been killed in Lahad Datu, Semporna and Kampung Tanduo, Sabah.

 

We believe the situation in Lahad Datu requires swift and peaceful intervention. We urge all parties to resist from using force while remaining committed to dialogue and negotiation throughout this process.

 

We are also very concerned with the lack of real-time information with respect to what has actually taken place so far in Lahad Datu. Up to this point the information received through the Malaysian news media lacks transparency and created unnecessary rumours and assumptions about the situation. The people have the right to get the information on on-going issues in Sabah.

 

In this context, we call on the governments of Malaysia and Philippines and the Sultanate of Sulu to:

 

  • Immediately declare a HUMANITARIAN CEASEFIRE so that agencies concerned can take immediate measures to ensure the safety of women, children, elderly and other vulnerable persons in the affected area.  And provide “safe zones” where humanitarian organizations and relevant agencies can install facilities to be accessed by those who are injured and require immediate medical care;

 

  • Take immediate steps to end the use of violence and to engage in dialogue with all stakeholders to resolve the crisis peacefully. 

 

  • Take proper measures to ensure that in the process of resolving the crisis, the human rights of everyone involved are respected and protected especially civilians from Lahad Datu, Semporna and nearby villages;

 

  • Take immediate measures to secure the safety of journalists who chose to access the area at all times to ensure fair reporting and dissemination of information to the general public;

 

  • Cease and desist from using excessive force and armed violence to end the prevailing conflict.

 

  • Initiate an independent and impartial investigation into the killings that has taken place and make the findings of the investigation public.

 

We fervently dissuade all the principals involved from brinkmanship by instead living up to your respective legacies as genuine leaders of your people with honor and dignity.

 

We urge you to come to terms with the unfolding of events that has serious implications on many lives and social institutions.  We all can’t afford that this will escalate into a grave humanitarian crisis spilling over into other nearby villages aside from Lahad Datu and Semporna, Sabah.

 

Time is of the essence.  The world is looking at you, now.

 

Contacts details:

Nalini Elumalai

SUARAM

Malaysia

detention@suaram.net/+60193758912

 

Gus Miclat, Jr

Executive Director of Initiatives for International Dialogue

gnmiclat@gmail.com

 

Civil Society of Malaysia and Philippines

March 8, 2013

============================================================

Signatories:

 

MALAYSIA

 

Suara Rakyat Malaysia (SUARAM)

Tenaganita

Women’s Centre for Change (WCC)

JUMP

ALIRAN (Persatuan Aliran Kesedaran Negara)

Malaysian Physicians for Social Responsibility

Center for Orang Asli Concerns (COAC)

Jaringan Rakyat Tertindas (JERIT)

Justice for Sisters

Seksualiti Merdeka

Pusat KOMAS

Persatuan Masyarakat Selangor dan Wilayah Persekutuan (PERMAS)

Community Action Network (CAN)

Persatuan Sahabat wanita Selangor

Community Development Centre (CDC)

Parti Sosialis Malaysia (PSM)

Malaysia Youth & Students Democratic Movement (DEMA)

All Women’s Action Society (AWAM)

Persatuan Kesedaran Komuniti Selangor (EMPOWER)

 

 

PHILIPPINES

 

Mindanao PeaceWeavers (MPW)

Initiatives for International Dialogue (IID)

Philippine Center for Islam and Democracy (PCID)

Free Burma Coalition – Philippines (FBCP)

Active Citizenship Foundation (ACF)

Agri-Aqua Development Coalition, Mindanao

AGONG Peace Network, Mindanao

Akbayan Citizens Action Party

Alliance of Progressive Labor (APL)

Balay Mindanaw Foundation, Inc

Banwaon One Tribe, One Territory, Mindanao

Center for Peace Education – Miriam College

Citizen’s Peace Watch

Civil Peace Service Program – Southern Christian College

Coalition of Social Development Organizations

Coalition for the Development of Sibuguey – Western Mindanao

Consortium of Bangsamoro Civil Society

Council of Organized Social Service Agencies in Mindanao

Derepa te Erumanen ne Menuvu, Mindanao

Focus on the Global South -Philippines

Gitib Inc., Mindanao

GZO Peace Institute

Human Rights Defenders-Pilipinas (HRDP)

Institute for Popular Democracy (IPD)

Interreligious Solidarity Movement for Peace (IRSMP)

IQRAA Islam Foundation

KAGDUMA, Incorporated, Mindanao

Kampanya para sa Makataong Pamumuhay (KAMP)

Kebager te Ked-Inged, Mindanao

Kahugpongan sa Mindanaw

KAISA

Landcare Foundation of the Philippines, Inc

Lumad Mindanaw Peoples’ Federation

Mindanao Peoples Peace Movement

Mindanao Peace Advocates Conference

Mindanao Coalition of Development NGO   Networks (MINCODE) Secretariat

Mindanao Alliance of Self-Help Societies – Southern Philippines Educational Cooperative Center

Mindanao Congress of Development NGOs and NGIs –Mindanao

Mindanao Solidarity Network (MSN)

Network for Transformative Social Protection

Pambansang Kilusan ng mga Samahang Magsasaka  (PAKISAMA)

Partnership of Philippine Support Services Agencies – Mindanao

Pakigdait, Incorporated

Partido Lakas ng Masa (PLM)

Partido ng Manggagawa (PM)

Pasaday Manobo Association (PAMAAS)

Pax Christi Institute – Philippines

Peace Advocates Zamboanga (PAZ)

People’s Alternative Studies Center for Research & Education in Social Dev’t (PASCRES)

People’s Global Exchange (PGX)

Philippine Human Rights Information Center (Philrights)

Philippine Alliance of Human Rights Advocates (PAHRA)

Philippine Business for Social Progress - Mindanao

Philippine Partnership for the Devt of Human Resources in Rural Areas (PHILDHRRA)

Redemptorist Center for Social and Ecological Concerns – Mindanao

SANLAKAS

SANLAKAS-Youth

SOCSKSARGEN Sociological Society

SPREAD – Oblates of Notre Dame

Sulong CARHRIHL

Task Force Detainees of the Philippines (TFDP)

Women Engaged in Action on 1325 (We Act 1325)

Women’s Human Rights and Legal Bureau (WLB)

World March of Women – Pilipinas

Young Moro Professionals

Pinay Kilos

Derepa te Erumanen ne Menuvu

Mindanao Indigenous People Women Development

 

REGIONAL/GLOBAL

 

  1. Global Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflict – Southeast Asia (SEA-GPPAC)
  2. Asia Pacific Solidarity Coalition (APSOC)
  3. ALTSEAN- Burma
  4. Asia-Pacific Movement on Debt & Development (JSAPMDD)
  5. Coalition Against Trafficking in Women-Asia Pacific (CATW-AP)
  6. International Peace Bureau (IPB)
  7. ISIS International
  8. Media Defense- Southeast Asia

 

BANGLADESH

Humanitywatch

NABODHARA, Bangladesh

 

BURMA/MYANMAR

Generation Wave Institute

 

CAMBODIA

Housing Rights Task Force (HRTF)

 

EAST TIMOR

East Timor Students Solidarity Council (ETSSC)

 

GERMANY

Asienstiftung (German Asia Foundation)

Philippinenbüro – Asienhaus

 

INDIA

Burma Centre Delhi

 

NEPAL

All Nepal Peasants Federation (ANPFa)

All Nepal Women Association (ANWA)

 

PAKISTAN

Center For Peace & Civil Society (CPCS)

 

INDIVIDUALS

Prof. Anuradha Chenoy, University of India

Prof. Kamal Mitra Chenoy, University of India

Mr. Ramon Casiple, IPER, Philippines

Ms. Sia Phearum, Director, HRTF Cambodia

Mmk, Tggw, Myanmar

Posted in Press Statements