In a damning report, the Commission on Human Rights found that the “grim reality” of being a human rights defender in the Philippines was that “they faced constant undermining and delegitimization of their work which lead to systematic attacks that place their ‘life, liberty, and security…at great risk”.
I have been monitoring the attacks on lawyers in the Philippines for over a decade. For many years the Philippines has been one of the most dangerous countries in the world for lawyers. Since 2001 there have been at least 219 violent attacks in which 197 lawyers were killed and 22 survived.
Prof. John Packer said, “ … Britain is wilfully blind to the duplicity of trying to recognize the genocidal regime through the farcical separation of a state from a regime.” He called sanctions against military leaders while embracing their regime “Bad Apple-ism”. That is, there are some bad guys in the Myanmar military, but as in the entire military as a national institution, not every rank and file member is bad.
The Rohingya photographers gathered here offer a revisioning of sorts, a counternarrative to existing tropes of their community as uber-victims. Instead, we get glimpses of what it means to ‘live with’ such infrastructures of statelessness, to see what we might otherwise miss.