30 September 2019, Paris – About a hundred members of the Filipino community and Philippine Embassy personnel, as well as those from the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP), Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) and other Philippine government agencies gathered in Paris to hear from the eight-member delegation of Philippine indigenous people led by Datu Nestor Apas of the Laingan Manobo tribe, in Paris on 30 September 2019.
Minister and Consul General Aileen S. Mendiola-Rau introduced the delegation and welcomed the Filipino community to the gathering in Salle Chasseloup in the 16th district of Paris on 30 September 2019.
The aim of the delegation was to share their personal stories and struggles relating to the communist insurgency problem that plagued their communities for more than five decades.
Datu Nestor Apas, the leader of the Indigenous Peoples delegation from the Philippines shared his stories to the audience, about the problems caused by insurgent groups.
Members of the Indigenous People’s delegation expressed their appreciation to the Filipino community in Paris for having the largest number of attendees among the countries they visited during their European tour.
The delegation said that by imparting their personal narratives, they are “breaking the silence” and appealed to the Filipino community to spread the truth about the atrocities committed against them by the communist terror groups. They emphasized that Filipinos abroad who are sending assistance must ensure that the organizations they choose are those that truly help indigenous peoples or internally-displaced communities and not the front organizations of communist terrorists. END