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Lumad Emergency Alliance (21st Century Crisis)

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Lumad Emergency Alliance
Alyansa Kagipitan ng Lumad
Type Militant group, civil rights group
Legal status Active
Purpose/focus Protect the Lumad community
Headquarters Flag of the Philippines Datu Mampaalong, Philippines
Official languages Filipino, Chavacano, English
Key people Fernando Akbay
Joseph Kape
Edwin Ligon

The Lumad Emergency Alliance (Filipino: Alyansa Kagipitan ng Lumad, Chavacano: Alianza Emergencia de los Lumads) known as the LEA in short, is a militant and vigilante group operating in the southern Philippine island of Mindanao. Its current goals, are to provide the native Lumads (the Christian and Animist natives of Mindanao) an armed protection against both Islamic radicals, as well as Roman Catholic pro-government militia groups known as the Ilaga, despite similarities with the latter-mentioned group.

It was found by datus, Fernando Akbay a Manobo chief from Cotabato and Joseph Kape, a T'boli chief from Davao in the wake of several attacks in Mindanao, perpetuated by both Hiligaynon-speaking Catholic militants known as the "Ilaga", and Abu-Sayyaf Islamist militants. The combined atrocities of these two groups had endangered the Lumad communities. The two set up armed blocs around the island of Mindanao, as well as contact groups, to carry out operations against cells being operating by the Abu-Sayyaf and the Ilaga. They carried forth a series of abduction operations against Ilaga members in 2014. Kape and Akbay's ancestors had fought alongside Moros in the resistance against Japanese and Philippine rule.

Although Joseph Kape and Fernando Akbay are the founders, they consider Juan Sagun, a native Subanon from Zamboanga City who helped found the secessionist Republic of Mindanao to be a founding member. Sagun often armed entire Lumad groups, as they fought against Japanese, and later Philippine occupation, both alongside and independent from Gumbay Piang's Moro Muslim armies. 

Due to the dispersion of the Lumads around the island of Mindanao, they operate almost everywhere, with Bukidnon Province having the most active groups, due to it having the heaviest population of Lumads. Other places with active cells and groups include the Zamboanga Peninsula, Agusan, Davao, Bukidnon and Kota Batu.

The LEA has received much support, from the Southern Nationalist Party and the Lakas CMD, two political parties operating in the southern Philippines that aim to protect and promote southern Philippine culture and nationalism. The LEA also has received support and positive outlooks from the Moros, the native Islamic tribes of Mindanao, the Sulu Archipelago and Palawan, who form and the majority of the islands' populations and have provided arms to the LEA.

Due to the LEA appearing as a Roman Catholic militant group, many have mistakenly associated them to be allies of the Ilaga, a Roman Catholic extremist militant group operating in Mindanao composed of Hiligaynon-speaking farmers and former soldiers and police. This misconception is also fueled by the similarities in the practices, such as the adopting of Folk Catholicism and use of amulets and talismans alongside conventional weapons of war such as firearms and blades. However, Fernando Akbay has announced that the LEA has no such alliances, and actively and proudly fights against the Ilaga - seeing them as a threat greater or equal to the Abu-Sayyaf. 

Other than providing an armed resistance against the threats, the LEA also seeks to provide humanitarian aid towards their communities in case of crises, both natural disasters and ones perpetuated by humans. They carry forth patrols, to see who emigrates into their communities.

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