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Verginia Saguitan Tugay

HRD, Leader

Verginia Saguitan Tugay is the leader of the grassroots indigenous organisation Tagdumahan, which has been campaigning against the entry of large-scale mining ventures into their ancestral domain.

The situation of human rights defenders has improved, to an extent, since the end of the Arroyo administration in 2010, but the current government has failed to address continuing violations against HRDs. HRDs still face extra-judicial killings, enforced disappearances, fabricated charges, arrest, denial of bail, threats and intimidation, and restrictions on their rights of freedom of expression, peaceful assembly and association. Heavy militarisation in some areas, Mindanao in particular, significantly affects the work of HRDs.