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The gold dust children in the shadow of the mines

MANILA (UCAN) : Thousands of children, some as young as nine, are working illegally in unregistered gold mines in The Philippines, a report from Human Rights Watch claims.

“The Philippine government prohibits dangerous child labour, but has done very little to enforce the law,” Juliane Kippenberg, the associate children’s rights director at the organisation, said in a 39-page report released in Manila on September 30.







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Tricks of the sex trade

KATHMANDU (AsiaNews) : Young women from Asia are increasingly being lured with the promises of jobs overseas into the sex trade.







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Australia may off-load refugees in Philippines

SYDNEY (Mabuhay) : An Australian government desperate to  off load refugees that it is keeping in cold storage in Nauru and on the Papua New Guinean island of Manus may end up in The Philippines, John Menadue, a businessman and former national director of the St. Vincent de Paul Society in Australia, writes.







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Lies more lies and damned lies

TANDAG (Mabuhay) : Over 4,000 people, mostly peasant farmers, members of indigenous communities, human rights advocates, priests and sisters marched through the streets of Butuan City on October 10 to mark the 40th day since three people were brutally and cold-bloodedly murdered by paramilitary forces in Surigao del Sur on September 1.

UCAN reported that the rally called on the authorities to act, saying that although the prime suspects in the murder have been named, no one has yet been arrested.







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Wage increase disappointing

HONG KONG (Mabuhay) : Migrant rights workers said they are disappointed with the 2.4 per cent wage increase for foreign domestic workers announced by the Hong Kong government on September 30.

The minimum allowable wage for the foreign domestic sector in Hong Kong is being increased by $100 a month to $4,210. The new level for the minimum wage is to be applicable to contracts signed from October 1 onwards.

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Senate told murder of tribal leaders is linked to mining

MANILA (UCAN) : “The people who stand firm against mining activities are the ones being intimidated by paramilitary forces,” Father Bong Galela, the social action director of the diocese of Tandag, in Surigao del Sur, told a Senate inquiry in Manila on October 1.

Indigenous peoples, who are collectively known as Lumads, have been under attack by the paramilitary group, the Magahat-Bagani Force, in recent days.







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Anti-trafficking laws are to protect not harass

HONG KONG (Mabuhay) : On October 17 last year, the secretary general of the General Alliance for the Advancement of Human Rights (Karapatan), Hanimay Suazo, was travelling in a taxi with Kae Solis in Davao City.

Suazo got out of the taxi at her home in Nova Tierra Village and went inside her house. Solis was waiting for the change, but when she got out a stranger pushed her.

The tall man shouted, “Where are you going? Where?”







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Anti-trafficking laws are to protect not harass

HONG KONG (Mabuhay) : On October 17 last year, the secretary general of the General Alliance for the Advancement of Human Rights (Karapatan), Hanimay Suazo, was travelling in a taxi with Kae Solis in Davao City.

Suazo got out of the taxi at her home in Nova Tierra Village and went inside her house. Solis was waiting for the change, but when she got out a stranger pushed her.

The tall man shouted, “Where are you going? Where?”







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Sugar barons funded at the expense of small farmers

TARLAC (Mabuhay) : The National Federation of the Union of Agricultural Workers has expressed disappointment and anger at the president of The Philippines, Noynoy Aquino, as well as the Department of Agrarian Reform, Department of Agriculture and the Sugar Regulatory Administration for providing billions of pesos of public funds to finance sugar block farms.