Panelo now believes Esperon on Duterte inclusion on NPA ‘kill list’
MANILA, Philippines — Presidential spokesman Salvador Panelo recanted Thursday his earlier statement calling reports of President Duterte’s inclusion in the “hit list” of the communist rebels as “false news” and now believes National Security Adviser Hermogenes Esperon, Jr’s “validated” information.
Just before Christmas Day, Panelo stood by the denial of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) founding chair Joma Sison on the alleged inclusion of Duterte in the kill list of the New People’s Army. He also said that Esperon was fed with wrong information.
“I was talking to Secretary Esperon earlier and he said the inclusion of the President in the hit list has been validated by them so it was not a wrong info[rmation] fed to them and according to him,” Panelo said in a Palace briefing three days later.
Esperon last week claimed that he and Duterte were included in an alleged hit list by communist groups.
His revelation prompted the Presidential Security Group (PSG) to beef up security measures for Duterte.
However, Sison branded as mere “psywar”, or psychological warfare, Esperon’s claim that the President has been included on a communist list of targets for assassination.
Nonetheless, the Palace official assured the public that the government is prepared for any eventuality in connection with Duterte’s security.
“We are ready for them because as I said, the very organization of the communist party (is) precisely to bring (down) the government and to assassinate the officials,” he said.
Edited by KGA
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