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The Moro People

MORO is the collective term for people belonging to the thirteen Ethno-linguistic groupings in Mindanao. The Moro People’s religion is Islam except for some non-Muslim Moro tribes and they possess distinct culture different from the rest of the people of the Philippines. 

The Moro proudly boast of having resisted centuries of Spanish colonization of the archipelago unlike their Christian brothers and sisters whom the colonizers had easily subjugated. It was only during early 1900’s with the coming of American colonizer that the Moros succumbed to foreign rule. As the new colonizer, their big business ventures launched an aggressive campaign to lay claim to Mindanao and its rich in natural resources for thereby, alienating Moros from their ancestral land.

Though the Moro People’s Socio-Political-Cultural system withstood Spanish rule, the Americans used more sophisticated means to subjugate the Moros who were already war-weary from centuries of resistance to Spanish colonization. The Americans used the “divide and rule” tactic to sow division among Muslims whom they had branded as uneducated and uncivilized. As a result, Moro history is replete with accounts of violence brought upon them by vicious colonizers or the Christians who were used to land grab their ancestral lands. 

Moro history is also replete with accounts of government’s adversarial approach towards the Moros. In recent history, numerous cases of killings, land grabbing’s and other forms of social and political violence have been committed against the Moros. In the 1970s’, government launched a genocidal war against the Moro people while it pursued an aggressive campaign to facilitate the entry of multi-national corporations in Mindanao. This gave the birth to a Moro resistance movement, which inspired some Moro sectors to take up arms against the duly instituted government.

Today, the violence and human rights abused continue to happen in the Moroland. As such, there is a great necessity to expose these abuses so that proper governmental actions are immediately taken.


The Moro Human Rights Center (MHRC) is a Non-Government Organization that pioneers human rights work for the Moro people. It was established on 20th November 1987 to extend services and support through its programs: Research and Documentation, Advocacy and Campaigns, Relief and Rehabilitation, and Trainings, Education and Organizing. Through its programs, the MHRC plays its role in the protection and promotion of the Moro people’s human rights.


A society wherein the Moro, Lumad and Filipino people co-exist peacefully and equitably, regardless of gender, race, religion, political orientation and realizing total human development in full harmony with nature.


1. To foster unity cooperation and mutual respect between and among the Moro, Lumad and Filipino people in promoting human rights.

2. To facilitate in the establishment and development of a Moro Human Rights Movement as a contribution to the realization of the Moro people’s right to self-determination.


1. To facilitate in the development of a progressive human rights movement that will promote the Moro people’s human rights.

2. To lobby for policy proposal on the ancestral land claim of the Moro people.

3. To work for the realization of a Moro people’s declaration of human rights.

4. To respond to the needs of all Moro victims of human rights violation and continuously monitor the Moro human rights situation.

5. To establish and strengthen a distinct center that is truly sensitive and responsive to the human rights concerns of the Moro people.

6. To establish and strengthen concrete project on Moro women and children internal refugees as direct and immediate beneficiaries- partners and eventually work for the establishment of a separate program for them.

In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

Executive Director
27-D Matapat Street, Barangay Pinyan, Quezon City, Philippines 
Tel. (632) 433-6816
Email: morohumanrights@yahoo.com
Website: http://kalilintad.tripod.com