CPP joins calls for justice for Ampatuan massacre victims
LUCENA CITY — The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) joined the calls for demanding justice for the victims of the Ampatuan massacre.
“On the tenth year of the Ampatuan massacre, the Party joins the Filipino people in echoing the demand for justice for all its victims,” the CPP said in a statement issued Saturday by Marco Valbuena, the party public information officer.
The CPP noted that after a decade, the Philippine justice system has failed to decisively resolve the case, and has allowed the legal maneuvers of the Ampatuan clan to delay the criminal proceedings.
The CPP said the tenth anniversary of the Ampatuan massacre was being remembered at a time “that the same conditions of terror by state and feudal dynasties, which led to the mass violence, are now reigning over the entire country.”
The communist group said “under the Duterte regime and its de facto martial law rule, unmitigated acts of violence and suppression are carried out by state forces against the regime’s critics, the political opposition and the mass-oriented democratic organizations.”
The CPP said the attacks against the Philippine media “have been particularly vile and has openly encouraged violence against independent-minded reporters, as well as against legal practitioners and religious people.”
“Journalists have been red-tagged by the military and police. Campus journalists have been targets of intimidation and harassment by military agents,” the CPP said.
According to the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines, at least 14 journalists were killed under the Duterte administration and 187 since 1986.
The New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists tagged the Philippines as the fifth deadliest country in the world for journalists.
The CPP statement said: “Amid continuing state violence and suppression, the CPP calls on all to unite and defend freedom and democracy against the Duterte regime’s de facto martial law rule.”
The Ampatuan massacre – dubbed as the worst single-attack on journalists in the world – took place when a convoy of journalists and family members of the Mangudadatu clan was making its way to the provincial Commission on Elections office to file then-Buluan Vice Mayor Esmael “Toto” Mangudadatu’s certificate of candidacy for governor, when they were waylaid allegedly by members and henchmen of the rival Ampatuan clan.
Fifty-eight individuals, including 32 members of the media were killed in the attack./lzb
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