Philippines: December 21, 10 am - Global Day of Action for the immediate release of the HR DAY7 and All Political Prisoners

19 December: On International Human Rights Day, December 10, 2020, simultaneous raids were conducted by the Philippine National Police in homes and offices of six trade union organizers and a journalist in Metro Manila, Philippines. With search warrants issued by a City Executive Judge, the police forcibly entered their homes and offices, planted “evidence” against them, and arrested and detained them on fabricated charges.

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Those arrested, now known as HR Day 7, were:  

Lady Ann Salem, communication officer of the International Association of Women in Radio and Television (IAWRT), and editor for online news site Manila Today

Dennise Velasco, trade union organizer of Defend Jobs Philippines

Joel Demate, trade union organizer of the Solidarity of Labor Rights and Welfare (SOLAR)

Rodrigo Esparago, trade union organizer of the Sandigang Manggagawa sa Quezon City (SMQC, an association of workers in Quezon City)

Romina Astudillo, Deputy Secretary-General of Kilusang Mayo Uno (KMU, May First Movement)-Metro Manila

Mark Ryan Cruz, Regional Executive Committee of KMU-Metro Manila

Jaymie Gregorio Jr., trade union organizer of KMU-Metro Manila


Karapatan joins journalists’ and workers’ groups, as well as the families of those arrested, in calling for their immediate release as well as the release of all political prisoners in the Philippines.


Various groups are taking action on December 21, 2020 as a GLOBAL DAY OF ACTION FOR THE RELEASE OF HR DAY 7 AND ALL POLITICAL PRISONERS IN THE PHILIPPINES. A protest action will be conducted at the Commission on Human Rights grounds at 10:00 a.m.. An online solidarity program will be held at 6:00 p.m. (Philippine Time) which will be livestreamed through Karapatan’s Facebook page: 


We enjoin the international community to support the action on that day through any of the following:


1.Join and/or watch the online solidarity program.


2. Issue statements of support for the HRD7, calling for their immediate release and dropping all charges against them; Sign the online petition:


3. Petition the Philippine government to accept the International Labor Organization High Level Tripartite Mission that could look into the cases of trade union and human rights violations among Filipino workers.

4. Take a photo of yourself or your group holding signs with the following calls and hashtags:





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