From the Sun Star-Davao (Apr 5): Bayan: More rights abuses with Balikatan
PROGRESSIVE group Bayan-Southern Mindanao Region warned anew of more human rights violations with the deployment of over 8,000 combined American and Filipino troops to hold Balikatan exercises launched in Zambales Friday.
The group also slammed the United States military operations in Typhoon Pablo-affected areas. News reports say that the US troops will be conducting "civil military operations" in New Bataan, Laak, and Monkayo with surveys in Cateel, Boston, and Baganga in Davao Oriental.
"Typhoon Pablo victims do not need militarization, especially from warmongering US troops. The US military is taking advantage of the current disaster situation to justify military intervention in the country. But in fact, the US is here to use the country as a launching pad for its war posturing against North Korea," said Sheena Duazo, spokesperson of Bayan-Southern Mindanao Region.
Duazo also said that the presence of US troops in the Philippines brings more risks than security.
"Amid the twin threats of North Korea’s very recent war declaration against US imperialism and China’s aggression over the territorial disputes in the West Philippine Sea, the country becomes more vulnerable to external attacks by the enemies of the US," Duazo said.
The Bayan leader warned the Filipinos of the deceptive promises of the US to protect the country against foreboding foreign attacks caused by territorial disputes.
"Nobody can effectively protect the sovereignty of the Philippines except us, Filipinos, through our united actions. We do not need the US. We only need a pro-people government," she said.