Filipino WWII veterans fight for benefits

Jan. 21, 2007 at 8:05 PM
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MANILA, Philippines, Jan. 21 (UPI) -- Filipino World War II veterans in the Philippines who fought for the United States are struggling to obtain their disability pension and other benefits.

About 12,000 Filipino World War II veterans are still waiting for the benefits promised to them with the Filipino Veterans Equity Bill, the Manila Times reported.

Veterans' affairs groups in both the United States and the Philippines have been campaigning for years to have the promised benefits paid. They point out that most of the 200,000 veterans in the Philippines died without ever receiving the benefits.

Filipinos are the only nationality that has been legally denied what is due them by the U.S. Congress, the Times said.

U.S.-born veterans receive basic benefits amounting to about $800 a month. Veterans' advocates argue that it is unfair that Filipino veterans do not receive such assistance, even though they fought in the war just as others did.

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