Thursday, May 25, 2017

Communists hit for intensified atrocities

From the Mindanao Times (May 26): Communists hit for intensified atrocities
THE OFFICE of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP) has denounced the order of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) to the New People’s Army (NPA) to intensify attacks following the declaration of Martial Law in Mindanao.

Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III, who leads the panel negotiating with the National Democratic Front of the Philippines, called on the CPP to reconsider its call, as the Philippine Government is once more headed to Europe to meet with the peace panel of the NDFP.
Bello, in a statement, said the CPP may have misunderstood the intent of the law, which is to to address rebellion in Marawi.

“We are deeply disturbed that the Communist Party of the Philippines made a false reading of the intents of President Duterte in placing Mindanao under Martial Law,” he said.

“The circumstances that precipitated, and the condition that warranted such declaration were matters of public knowledge. There was a need to restore law and order, protect the lives of the citizens and preserve private and state properties.”

Bello said that President Duterte was clear about not including the NPA.

“The President, in no uncertain terms, categorically declared he was not after the New People’s Army. He, in fact, reiterated his keenness on pursuing peace,” he said.

“We therefore find the CPP directive to the NPA to intensify attacks as totally misplaced borne out of a grossly distorted appreciation of the President’s intention.”

“At the very least, it was an insult to the candor and genuineness displayed by the President and the GRP Panel in talking peace. At worse, it betrays the absence of sincerity of the CPP in the negotiating table.”

Bello asked the CPP to correct its claims as both peace panels are set to meet for the next round of talks. “Lest it be construed as abetting the criminal and terror acts of the Maute group and a gang of Moro bandits, we put the CPP to task to correct its error and recall its senseless order,” he said.

The government, he added, was sincere in pushing for peace.

The CPP in a statement May 24 said it denounced the Duterte administration for declaring martial law.

“By declaring martial law in Mindanao, Duterte has gone beyond the threats and theatrics of the past months,” the CPP statement said.

“The civil-democratic rights of the people across Mindanao are being curtailed as they are subjected to checkpoints, warrantless arrests, curfews and other restrictions. The Party calls on the entire Filipino people to fight the imposition of martial law in Mindanao and demand its immediate lifting.”

The CPP said the imposition of the law “was made on the narrow pretext of armed clashes in Marawi City between the AFP and the so-called Maute Group, a bandit group whose leaders have known links with military officials.”

“In the vain hope of justifying the martial law declaration, the fascists are turning Marawi City into a wasteland in the same way that parts of Zamboanga City was razed to the ground in 2013 by the AFP with aerial bombardments and heavy gunfire.”

The CPP said it suspected Duterte of having plans beyond Mindnao.

“Duterte’s martial law declaration in Mindanao has gone beyond Marawi. It has a much wider target and purpose,” the CPP said.

The CPP likened Duterte’s imposition to the rule of former dictator Ferdinand Marcos, who has earned praises from President Duterte, the latest praise being made as recently as Wednesday afternoon upon his arrival from Moscow, Russia.

The CPP said they would have words with the peace panel.

“The imposition of martial law and the worsening human rights abuses that will come out of it will surely be brought forward in peace negotiations as violations of the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law (CARHRIHL),” the statement said.

“In the face of the Duterte regime’s martial law declaration in Mindanao, the necessity of waging revolutionary armed struggle becomes ever clearer. Thus, the New People’s Army (NPA) must be ready to accelerate the recruitment of new Red fighters as Duterte’s martial law convinces more and more people to take up arms against the rotten system. The Party calls on the NPA to plan and carry out more tactical offensives across Mindanao and the entire archipelago.”

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