Sunday, November 13, 2005

NR1123:Malacanang waiting for more rapes by US servicemen before calling for VFA review

From the Office of Anakpawis Rep. Crispin Beltran
News Release November 13, 2005

Malacanang wants more rape cases perpetraed by US servicemen before even considering review of the VFA

Anakpawis Representative Crispin Beltran today said that the Macapagal-arroyo admninstration's refusal to even consider calling for a review of the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) and its social impact was yet another betrayal of the Filipino people. He expressed strong disagreement with the statement of justice secretary Raul Gonzales that it was still premature to call for the abrogation of the VFA or even its review.

"What is this government waiting for? Another rape? The rape the six US Marines perpetated last November 1 was not the first act of brutality and violence US military forces have done against Filipinas. Does the Macapagal-Arroyo government want more Filipinas to be raped and violated by more US military men before it will begin investigations into the VFA and its destructive political and social impact on the country and the people?", he queried.

"What's most appalling and infuriating about the Arroyo government's stand on this issue is that it is more anxious to make sure that it's relations with US is not in any way compromised. Nowhere in any of Malacanang's public declarations have we heard Macapagal-Arroyo or her spokespersons denounce the six US Marines and the heinous crime they committed. Malacanang and its adjunct agencies immediately concerned with this issue are bending over backwards to assure the US that this rape case will in no way affect political and military relations between the two countries. The Macapagal-Aroyo government's loyalties and allegianc truly lie with the US," he said.

The veteran labor leader turned legislator also said that despite denials from the government, it's becoming clearer every day that whitewash of the rape case is already in the works. He said the six US servicemen were already prepared to leave the country under the pretext that investigations against them will be done in the US.

"The bad guys will be allowed to make a clean get-away with the full blessing of the Philippine government," he exclaimed. "Filipinos who commit small-time, petty crimes in the US are punished with the full extent of US law and are not allowed to be extradited but instead imprisoned in the US, and the Philippine government and its embassy in the US are more often than not helpless. It's an outrage that it's been almost two weeks and the US servicemen have not been turned over to Philippine authorities much less charged with rape. Given the recent statements of Malacanang which dove-tail with those of the US embassy, it's evident that this rape case will be dismissed and the perpetrators will not be punished. This is almost like a second rape against the poor victim - this time with the approval of the Philippine government." #


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