Bishop Protests at Tutu's Inclusion on List of 'Troublemakers'

Episcopal News Service. December 5, 1996 [96-1644O]

(ENI) Bishop Narciso V. Ticobay, Primate of the Episcopal Church of the Philippines, recently wrote to Philippines President Fidel Ramos expressing his indignation at news reports that Archbishop Desmond Tutu of South Africa had been included in the government's list of potential troublemakers. He also said he was alarmed at the existence of such a list "as it sends a chilling message to us who still bear the scars of the traumatic recent past." The Philippines government put Archbishop Tutu's name on the list as part of security preparations for the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit which began on November 25. According to Philippines News and Features news service, the "banned" list drawn up by the government's Bureau of Immigration included about 100 individuals from 19 countries, mostly prominent people and human rights advocates, who are coming for "anti-APEC" conferences to be run in parallel with the APEC summit. At the head of the list is East Timorese activist Jose Ramos-Horta, who along with Timorese Roman Catholic Bishop Carlos Filipe Ximenes Belo, won the Nobel Peace Prize in October, 1996. Also on the banned list are Danielle Mitterrand, wife of the late French Premier Francois Mitterrand, and retired Roman Catholic Bishop Aloysius Nobuo Soma of Japan. According to church sources, although Tutu was invited to attend one of the meetings to be held at the same time as the APEC gathering, he could not attend.