CONCERN is mounting in the Philippines over the disappearance of Fr Raymundo Abadicio and Mr Sixto Carlos, a political scientist. Fr Abadicio is a member of the secretariat for Social Action, Justice and Peace Secretariat of the Bishops' Conference of the Philippines and the regional executive secretary of the Luzon Secretariat for Social Action.
The last time he was seen was when two unidentified men called at his house six weeks ago. They said they were ging to take him to a "three-month seminar" with other priests. Fr Abadacio left with the two men and has not been seen or heard of since. Witnesses who were in Fr Abadacio's house say that he agreed to go with the men because they assured him that Fr Eduardo Eleazar, the chaplain of the presidential battalion, would vouch For his safety.
Fr Abadacio's friends contacted Fr Eleazar but he has denied knowledge of the whole affair. Checks round all the dioceses of the Philippines have shown that no three months seminar is being held or planned.
There are now mounting fears that Fr Abadicio is being detained by the military authorities. A delegation of religious leaders have contacted the UnderSecretary for Home Defence but have still not been able to obtain any information about Fr Abadicio.
Mr Carlos Sixtos, the former chairman of the political science department of the Philippine College of Commerce, disappeared one week after Fr Abadicio.
Kathleen Bagan, the projects director of Cafod, urges all those who are concerned about the plight of Fr Abadicio and Mr Sixtos to write to the Philippine Embassy or to members of the hierarchy in the Philippines.