Monday, April 18, 2005

NR0411:AFP gearing for a ttacks in Metro Manila

Mula sa Tanggapan ni Anakpawis Rep. Crispin Beltran
News Release April 11, 2005
House of Representatives, South Wing Rm 602
931-6615 Ina Alleco R. Silverio, Chief of Staff
Cellphone number 09213907362

AFP gearing up attacks against civilians in Metro Manila; GMA's support for activist extermination campaign evident - Rep. Beltran

Anakpawis Representative Crispin Beltran today said that the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Maapagal-Arroyo administration have exposed themselves as the masterminds behind the ongoing campaign of political repression and activist killings and should be condemned from all fronts as bastions of human rights violations and burgeoning fascist dictatorship. Only yesterday, another Bayan Muna official in Eastern Samar was attacked, bringing the number of activists and civilians sympathetic to activist causes killed/harassed to 33.

Beltran reiterated his stand that former dictator Ferdinand Marcos has been reincarnated in the guise of incumbent president Gloria Arroyo. "The AFP cannot be taking these actions and making these serious, life-threatening accusations as well as carrying out killings of activists without the knowledge and full back-up of the President. Not a single ranking official of the administration -- not even the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) - have made a comment on the killings, nevermind that the number of bodies keeps increasing on an almost weekly basis."

This was Beltran's reactions to reports that progressive people's organizations allied with the Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (BAYAN) are directly taking orders from the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) and the New People's Army (NPA). According to the AFP, these people's organizations are laying the foundations for upcoming operations of the NPA in the Metropolis.

"Neither the president nor her spokseperson have said a word regarding these killings and the villification campaign. It's impossible not to take this silence for condonation and even support for these infamous deeds."
These are old allegations. Napaglumaan na ng panahon. Legal and democratic mass organizations such as the Kilusang Mayo (KMU) and the Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas among others allied with BAYAN have been in existent for the last two decades and more. KMU, for one, is celebrating its silver anniversary this year, on May 1st. They are long recognized and acknowledged legal organizations not only locally, but even internationally," he said.

Beltran said that the AFP's accusations were direct threats against the lives and safety of the members and allies of the organizations the AFP have branded as NPA fronts. "Essentially, the AFP is branding hundreds of thousands of laborers, government employees, school teachers, scientists, students, clergy and basically members from all sectors of Philippine society as on the link-up with the NPA. How does the AFP figure how to go about weeding out their suspects? Or will the AFP and its paramilitary arms just beging shooting and abducting random members?" He said than the media liaison and campaign coordinators of the people's organizations appear to be particular targets because its their tasks that are being alleged as part of the preparations for evental NPA operations in Metro Manila.

The veteran labor leader turned lawmaker expressed strong apprehensions over the possible attacks the AFP will launch against the people's organizations it has determined as alleged fronts of the CPP and the NPA. He said that the May 1st labor day celebrations promises to be the biggest rally in the first half of the year, and it's clearly going to be a massive protest against the Macapagal-Arroyo administration and its economic policies and political repression campaign.

"It's not the NPA but the AFP who are preparing to launch attacks in Metro Manila, and its targetting civilians. They're bringing their manhunt of activists from the provinces to the Metropolis, " he said. "The Labor Day celebrations in the National Capital Region (NCR) will undoubtedly bring together a great number of activists and civilians sympathetic to activists causes, not to mention the national leaders and officials of the people's organizations the AFP is accusing of being communist fronts. Everyone is a potential target," he said.

Beltran said that heads in the AFP should roll because of the release of "Know Thy Enemy" cd and its libelous, murderous contents. "It introduces the entire mindset and plans of the AFP against democratic and legal people's organizations and worsens the already twisted ideas of the members of the AFP regarding civil liberties and democratic rights. This is worse than villification - the AFP has painted bullseye signs on the forehead of all members of the groups it has put on its list."#


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