Tañada: Stop Red-tagging, know truth about martial law
MANILA, Philippines — The grandson of one of the Philippines’ most revered nationalist, former congressman Erin Tañada III, called for an end to Red-tagging of activists.
Tañada , grandson of the late nationalist senator Lorenzo Tañada , made the statement on the eve of the 47th anniversary of a dark episode in Philippine history, martial law under the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos.
“Today, as we commemorate the 47th year of martial law, we express alarm over the increasing instances of red-tagging and political harassment,” Tañada said in a statement on Friday, Sept. 20. Martial law had been declared by Marcos on Sept. 21.
Tañada pointed to the case of Sonia Soto, a student activist who survived martial law, as the latest example of Red-tagging.
He urged people to “stand for truth and spread the real stories of the dark days of terror and injustice under the Marcos dictatorship.” His grandfather was among thousands jailed by Marcos at the start of martial law in a crackdown on his critics.
According to Amnesty International, over 100,000 individuals had fallen victims to human rights violations during martial law. At least 70,000 people had been arrested, 34,000 were tortured and more than 3,000 were killed, many in summary executions
Soto, a member of the League of Filipino Students, and former Defense Secretary Juan Ponce-Enrile signed the Soto-Enrile agreement in 1982 which prohibited military and police from entering campuses.
Echoing Tañada, Sen. Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan said if Soto was Red-tagged then he should be, too, for being an activist during martial law./TSB
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