09 April 2008
Reference: Retchilda Extremadura, Executive Director, Lila Pilipina
Lana Linaban, Deputy Secretary General, GABRIELA
WOMEN’S GROUPS PROTEST HOUSE “REVOTING” ON COMFORT WOMEN RESOLUTION
Lila Pilipina, organization of former comfort women, expressed apprehension at the recent development regarding House Resolution 124, authored by Gabriela Women’s Party Representatives Liza Maza and Luz Ilagan. The House Resolution, demanding an official apology from the government of Japan regarding the sexual slavery of Filipino women during the Japanese occupation of the country in World War II, is being returned to the House committee on foreign affairs allegedly due to lack of quorum when it was adopted last March 11.
“We believe that the question of process is just an alibi to delay, if not, to overturn the positive decision. As they have done in the past, this is but another attempt to take away a significant gain in the long struggle for justice of Filipino comfort women,” said Retchilda Extremadura, executive director of Lila Pilina.
The women’s group GABRIELA, meanwhile, calls on the members of Congress not to succumb to any pressure coming from the Japanese government. “HR 124 is long overdue. Instead of delaying this, the Congress should be spurred to hasten its implementation. The legislators of USA and Canada have long adopted a similar resolution. It is ironic that such a resolution would meet such encumbrances here in the Philippines, where its citizens were the actual victims,” said Lana Linaban, GABRIELA spokesperson.
Both groups vowed to remain vigilant and enjoins Filipino people to join the lolas in their action should the House Resolution be revoked due to pressures from the Japanese government.