Mong Palatino

blogging about the philippine left and southeast asian politics since 2004


@mongster is a manila-based activist, former philippine legislator, and blogger/analyst of asia-pacific affairs.

May 2020: A month of mayhem: Security law, tracing apps, and media shutdowns in Asia-Pacific

The COVID-19 pandemic did not stop various governments in the region from imposing new laws and orders that further weakened democracy and human rights. China’s security law threatens Hong Kong’s freedom, a major broadcaster in the Philippines was forced to stop operating, Malaysia launched a crackdown on Rohingya refugees, and dozens have been charged in Bangladesh for sharing their views on the government’s COVID-19 response

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June 2020: Terror, cyber libel, and resisting internet shutdowns from Rakhine to Papua

Myanmar continues to restrict the internet in Rakhine and Chin States amid growing civil society opposition. Meanwhile, an Indonesian court has declared the internet throttling in West Papua as unlawful. The Philippines clamps down on free speech after it convicted journalist Maria Ressa for cyber libel, while the government is readying the passage of a draconian Terror Law.

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July 2020: #HoldTheLine: Journalists push back against state persecution and sexual harassment from Philippines to Maldives

Afghan journalists succeeded in persuading the government to drop its plan to amend media laws. A Maldives editor is suing a top official at the president’s office for sexual harassment. Hong Kong journalists are exposing and decrying police violence. And a global #HoldTheLine coalition has emerged in support of journalists in the Philippines.

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