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Sison condemns arrest of NDFP peace consultant

Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) founder Jose Maria Sison. INQUIRER FILE PHOTO

LUCENA CITY – Exiled Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) founder Jose Maria Sison condemned the arrest of National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) peace consultant Rey Casambre.

“His arrest is an example of injustice under the Duterte regime and the malicious and criminal tactic of ‘legal offensive’ whereby any person can be arbitrarily arrested and detained indefinitely on false criminal charge,” Sison said in a solicited reaction by the Inquirer from his base in Utrecht, The Netherlands.

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He said Casambre’s arrest was a violation of his basic democratic rights, which protect him from arbitrary arrest, false charges and planting of evidence.

READ: NDFP consultant Rey Casambre arrested in Cavite

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Sison said the NDFP peace consultant was a “victim of trumped-up charges and planted evidence.”

Sison said Casambre’s arrest is also “an attack on the peace process as something that goes beyond the passing regime of the tyrant Duterte.”

“His arrest is a violation of the continuing safety and immunity guarantees under Jasig and The Hague Joint Declaration,” said Sison, who serves as the NDFP chief political consultant.

Jasig, signed by the government and NDFP panels in 1995, is supposed to protect from arrest and other harassments negotiators from both sides who are taking part in the talks.

But Presidential Spokesman Salvador Panelo argued that the NDFP consultants could no longer invoke their “immunity” through the Jasig as peace talks have been terminated since last year.

Police reported that Casambre and his wife Patricia, were arrested by the police in Bacoor, Cavite on Friday while on board a Toyota Vios.

Police said Casambre was arrested for murder and two counts of attempted murder by virtue of a search warrant issued by the Regional Trial Court 11th Judicial Region, Branch 32, in Lupon, Davao Oriental.

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Police claimed they recovered from Casambre a .45-caliber pistol and a magazine, seven bullets for caliber .45 pistol, a bundle of electric detonating cord, a fragmentation grenade, and P6,000 cash.

Although Casambre’s murder charge is non-bailable, the court allowed him to post a P120,000 bail for each count of attempted murder. /jpv

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