Remembering Martial Law under the Marcos regime
Forty-six years ago this Friday, former President Ferdinand Marcos placed the whole country under martial law.
To this date, Filipinos still remember what many described as one of the darkest chapters in Philippine history.
Under military rule, civil and political rights were abolished, Congress was dissolved, a one-man rule was imposed and human rights were blatantly violated.
Here are some quick facts about martial law under the Marcos administration:
- On September 21, 1972, Marcos signed Proclamation No. 1081 that placed the entire country under martial law, following a series of bombings in Metro Manila.
- Marcos, in his diary entry for September 22, mentioned the supposed ambush and assassination attempt on then defense secretary Juan Ponce Enrile.
- After declaring martial law, Marcos dissolved Congress.
- Under martial law, all powers were transferred to the president. Marcos authorized the military to arrest individuals on charges of conspiring to take over government, enforced curfew, and banned group assemblies.
- Human rights violations were rampant during the martial law era. In a report by Amnesty International, over 100,000 people were recorded to have been victims of martial law from 1972 to 1981 –70,000 were arrested, 34,000 were tortured, and 3,240 were killed by the military and the police.
- Marcos lifted martial law on January 17, 1981.
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