Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Dutch Activist Deported

Dutch activist deported

Dutch activist Thomas van Beersum catches up on some reading as he waits for his flight out of the country at the immigration holding area of NAIA 1 Wednesday, August 7, 2013. (photo by Eric B. Apolonio,
The online news portal of TV5
MANILA, Philippines -- (UPDATE - 4:30 p.m.) After the Bureau of Immigration prevented him from leaving the country on Tuesday, Dutch activist Thomas ven Beersum finally flew out Wednesday, officially deported for overstaying his visa and engaging in “partisan political activity” by joining a protest during President Benigno Aquino III’s state of the nation address.
Beersum, who drew attention after he was photographed yelling at a policeman at the SONA protest, was escorted by five BI personnel onboard Cathay Pacific flight CX900, which was to take him home to The Netherlands via Hong Kong, late Wednesday morning.
BI-NAIA intelligence chief Wilson Soluren said Beersum stayed overnight at the agency’s office at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport terminal 1 and was provided with free meals and his ticket home.
The activist, interviewed before he left, said he had no regrets joining the SONA protest and, “if given a chance, I would like to come back to the Philippines to join more human right rallies.”
“I will still support protesters in my simple way as a human being and I don’t regret it,” he added. “The only thing I am asking to this government is to get off my name in the blacklist so I can go back here to join rallies.”
He also said jokingly: “I enjoyed the overnight stay at the BI intelligence office and I hope that I can stay here forever.”
Beersum said his parents were initially worried on learning of his predicament, “but I emailed back saying that I am okey and taking my flight back to Netherlands on Wednesday morning.”
In a Facebook post from Hong Kong Wednesday afternoon, where he was waiting for his flight to Amsterdam, Beersum thanked “the people and groups that have been supporting me and although I've been blacklisted, I will still firmly support the just struggle of the Filipino people for social and national liberation. Mabuhay!”
He also called his detention and deportation “harassment” that was “obviously done to distract the people from the actual problems that the country faces, such as the almost total domination of its economy by foreign capitalists and the complicity of comprador puppets such as Aquino.”
He also cited the “human rights abuses under Aquino's administration … So far there have been 142 documented cases of extrajudicial killing and 164 frustrated killing; 16 incidents of enforced disappearance; 76 cases of torture and 293 cases of illegal arrest and detention.”
The activist was supposed to board a China Southern flight to Beijing on his way home Tuesday morning but was barred by BI personnel after his name showed up on the agency’s blacklist.
Soluren said Beersum could not return to the country unless the Department of Justice lifts his name from the blacklist.
Credit to : Eric B. Aplonio/