14 August 2007
STILL NO JUSTICE FOR LOLAS 62 YEARS AFTER END OF WWII
The elderly women of Lila Pilipina, organization of Filipino victims of Japanese war time atrocities, and members of the militant women’s group, GABRIELA held a protest action in front of the Japanese Embassy today in commemoration of the 62nd Anniversary of the Second World War.
“Justice remains elusive for the Filipina ‘comfort women.’ Many of the lola’s have died but we must continue the fight for justice. Otherwise, we will not learn from the lessons of history and more women will suffer the fate of ‘comfort women’.” This was according to Ritchelda Extremadura, Executive Director of Lila Pilipina.
“The fight for justice of the lola’s should be the fight of all Filipino women. Calling for justice means calling for an end to the victimization of women in times of war. It means calling for an end to wars of aggression,” said Joms Salvador, spokesperson of GABRIELA.
According to Salvador, studies show that 80% of those affected by war – killed, injured and traumatized – are women and children.
Meanwhile, Lila Pilipina lauds the Gabriela Women’s Party for filing a House Resolution for the Philippine Government to urge the Government of Japan to “formally acknowledge, apologize and accept its responsibility over the sexual slavery of young women commonly known as comfort women.”
“It has been decades since the first Filipino ‘comfort woman’ came out and sought justice but the Philippine government has yet to officially take a stand on the issue. It is shameful for any government which cannot stand up for its citizens aggrieved by foreign military,” said Extremadura.
The House Resolution was filed yesterday by Representatives Liza Maza and Luz Ilagan of Gabriela Women’s Party.
The protest action of Lila Pilipina and GABRIELA is also part of the Global Action Day Demonstration on the issue of “comfort women” on August 15. Simultaneous demonstrations are expected in Tokyo and Osaka in Japan, Seoul and Busan in South Korea, Australia, Netherlands, Canada, Germany, Taiwan and USA.
Ritchelda Extremadura, Lila Pilipina Executive Director, 0915-5379579
Joms Salvador, GABRIELA Spokesperson, 371-2302 / 0918-6254080