It has been almost two weeks since protests broke out at San Francisco International Airport, due to the detention and deportation of Filipino peace advocate Jerome Aba, who was supposed to be part of a human rights speaking tour in the US.
Upon returning to the Philippines, Aba claimed he was a victim of torture by the US Customs and Border Protection Agency.
Calls for justice from the Filipino community and its allies have led to the San Francisco board of supervisors to unanimously pass a resolution, condemning the inhumane treatment of detainees at SFO, and urging federal representatives to call for an independent investigation of Aba’s 28-hour detention.
San Francisco Supervisor Jane Kim told BA that it was an easy decision to pass this resolution.
“My initial reaction was shock and disgust that we would treat someone who is here to talk about peace and human rights violations in such an incredibly horrid manner. I believe our country is better than this.”
Kim also puts the blame on the Trump administration, citing how his policies on immigration have negatively affected all communities.
Kim says that Aba should have never been a victim of these abuse allegations — but she hopes that through this resolution — this never happens again.
“We have thousands of Filipino immigrants and families and visitors that come through SFO every single day, and it is incredibly important that we remain a welcome state, and that we also uphold our values of protecting the human rights of all of us.”
The resolution directs the clerk of the board of supervisors to transmit copies of the resolution to congress-women Nancy Pelosi, Jackie Speier and senators Dianne Feinstein and Kamala Harris, urging them to take all action necessary to achieve the objectives of the resolution.
The CBP has denied any abuse allegations by Aba.