Month: May 2017

The Class of 2009 – Where are they now?

Pursuing higher education By Ted Alcuitas Eight years ago in 2009 we featured four young graduates in the short-live Silangan newspaper. Titled ‘Bucking the Trend’ it was our attempt to encourage our youth to pursue higher education because of the troubling statistics that more Filipino youths  were dropping out of school. Today we followed those four graduates and how they are doing. Nicole Ignacio-Montgomery Nicole now lives and works in Barcelona, Spain where she settled after finishing post-graduate studies in the University College of London. She is currently Business Development and Operations Specialist with Manila-based EI Construction and Development Corporation....

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FAST FACTS: What you should know about the Maute Group

Rappler: Newsbreak FAST FACTS: What you should know about the Maute Group Posted: 23 May 2017 08:02 PM PDT MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte declared martial law over Mindanao on Tuesday, May 23, prompted by a raging gun battle between government forces and members of the Maute group in Marawi City. The local terrorist group based in Lanao del Sur has carried out several bombings and kidnappings, and has been active in recent months. It has also pledged allegiance to international terrorist group Islamic State (ISIS), carrying and raising ISIS black flags and insignia. This latest clash in Marawi came about as the military on Tuesday launched a surgical strike in barangay Basak Malutlut against “high value targets” belonging to the Abu Sayyaf Group and the Maute Group. Clashes erupted between the two sides, with residents later reporting on social media that fires reportedly broke out and electricity cut as the situation worsened into the night. (TIMELINE: Marawi clashes prompt martial law in all of Mindanao) Who’s behind the Maute group? The group, which also calls itself Daulah Islamiyah, is led by Abdullah Maute, the eldest of the Maute brothers. According to the Terrorism Research and Analysis Consortium, the brothers “went from petty small-time criminals to full fledged militant activity when they created Khalifa Islamiah Mindanao in 2012.” According to military sources, Abdullah’s father, Cayamora Maute, was a...

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My Family’s Slave: Alex Tizon’s final story

The story that shook the diaspora By Ted Alcuitas He never intended to write his final story but fate has brought Pulitzer Prize- winning Alex Tizon’s pen to an end. His searing account of how his family harboured a woman – Eudocia Tomas Pulido, endearingly called ‘Lola’ for 56 years as a ‘secret slave’ has not only generated a storm of controversy but praise as well. The Seattle-based Tizon died a day before The Atlantic was to inform him that they will publish his story ‘My Family’s Slave’, in the June issue. He died on March 24 of natural causes at his home in Eugene, Oregon. He was 57. This was his second story for The Atlantic. In April 2016, “In the Land of the Missing Persons” came out. The magazine described it as a “beautifully rendered story about ordinary people who mysteriously disappeared in the Alaska wilderness”. “This was his ultimate story, “ his wife, Melissa told The Atlantic’s editors shortly after the publication of ‘My Family’s Slave’. “He was trying to write it for four or five years. He struggled with it, “ but when he started writing it for The Atlantic, “he stopped struggling, he wrote with ease,” Melissa revealed. Tizon wrote about the ordeal of a young village girl brought to the U. S. against her will. Lola Eudocia was ‘gifted’ to her...

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Breaking: Duterte considering nationwide martial law

“Martial law of Mr Marcos was very good,” :Duterte / 06:30 PM May 24, 2017  He says “if I think that ISIS has taken a foothold also in Luzon,” the main northern island, “and terrorism is not really far behind, I might declare martial law throughout the country.” Duterte also said that militants who stormed southern Marawi city beheaded the local police chief at a checkpoint they set up. Duterte spoke to reporters after returning from a visit to Moscow as fighting raged in Marawi between government troops and Muslim militants who took about a dozen people hostage. He has earlier declared martial law in the southern Mindanao region, where Marawi is located. Duterte warned martial law would be similar to military rule imposed by dictator Ferdinand Marcos a generation ago. Marcos’s two-decade rule ended in 1986 when millions of people took to the streets in a famous “People Power” revolution. “Martial law of Mr Marcos was very good,” Duterte said....

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Breaking: Duterte declares martial law in MIndanao

Duterte to fly home from Russia ABS/CBN (2nd UPDATE) President Rodrigo Duterte on 10 p.m. Tuesday declared martial law in the entire Mindanao island amid the ongoing clashes between government troops and Maute group terrorists in Marawi City, presidential spokesman Ernesto Abella said.  Abella, in a briefing in Moscow, said the President ordered him to make the announcement. He said martial law in the area will be in effect for 60 days. “What the President has done is only for Mindanao including Basilan, Sulu, and Tawi-tawi,” he said. Duterte’s meetings with Russian President Vladimir Putin and Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev will be postponed as he will leave Russia at 10 p.m. Moscow time, to return to Manila, Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano said. He said he has spoken to his counterpart in Moscow and Russian officials understand the situation. “They understand that the President has to return to the Philippines. I will stay behind to sign agreements. The President feels he is needed in Manila ASAP,” Cayetano said. Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said 2 soldiers and one police officer were killed, while 12 others were wounded in ongoing clashes in Marawi City. He said the Maute group still occupies a street and two bridges leading to Marawi City. “The whole of Marawi City is blacked out. There is no light and there are Maute snipers all around so...

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