Don’t use Paris attacks to crack down on protests, anti Apec group says
Despite the terror attacks in Paris on Saturday, protesters who are against the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) Summit in Manila demanded the Philippine government to not use the attacks as a means to crack down on them.
Teddy Casiño, the spokesperson for #PHFightAPEC, said in a statement they are condemning the Paris attacks, which killed scores of innocent civilians, but they called on the Philippine government not to prevent any of their activities.
“We are one with the world in condemning the terrorist attacks in Paris and in other places where innocent civilians are being targeted,” Casiño said. “However, we believe that the prevention of such atrocities should not be at the expense of the rights of people to assemble and air their legitimate grievances.”
On Saturday, the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) put all their forces on “full alert” after the Paris attacks.
The Philippine National Police (PNP) also issued similar status hours before the AFP did.
Casiño, however, said the heightened security alert should not serve as a ban to their protests.
“The pronouncement of PNP officials that they will be heightening their security measures in the wake of the Paris incident should not lead to a ban on protests near or around the venue of the Apec Summit,” Casiño said in the statement.
The former legislator added the PNP has set up blockades at Baclaran Church “where hundreds of Lumad from Mindanao have set up camp after being sent away from Liwasang Bonifacio.” JE
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