Reds denounce killings, arrests of activists in Southern Tagalog
LUCENA CITY –– The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) strongly condemned the spate of extrajudicial killings and arrests carried out by government forces in Southern Tagalog.
“The murders and mass arrest of activists mark a heightening of the tyrannical Duterte regime’s dirty war against all patriotic and democratic forces in Southern Tagalog, Bicol and across the country,”
Marco Valbuena, CPP information officer, said in a statement Monday.
He added: “These attacks confirm that Duterte is the number one terrorist in the country today.”
“To justify the extrajudicial killings, the military and police have resorted to their trite claims that the victims were armed and that they ‘fought back’,” Valbuena said.
Valbuena accused President Duterte of using government forces “to instill fear among the people in the hope of making them bow to his power.”
“In killing unarmed people, Duterte continues to prove himself a big fascist coward,” Valbuena said.
He said the crackdown “confirms that the country is under undeclared martial law, after the enactment of the Anti-Terror Law”.
The CPP tasked its armed wing, the New People’s Army (NPA), to mobilize its units to help secure the people being persecuted and hunted down by government forces.
“Targets of Duterte’s state terrorism can be absorbed by NPA units or provided haven within the NPA’s guerrilla base areas,” the CPP said.
The CPP ordered the communist guerrillas to “take the initiative to carry out tactical offensives to punish the perpetrators and masterminds of these crimes.”
At least nine activists were killed, most of them in their own homes, and at least four others were arrested in police and military raids early Sunday, March 7.
The police said the operations aim to go after those members of CTGs (communist terrorist groups).
Six were killed in Rizal province, two in Batangas, and one in Cavite, the Calabarzon police reported.
Nine persons died “after they fought the operatives during a supposed peaceful implementation of search warrants,” six were arrested, while nine others, who remained-at-large, are now the subjects of police manhunts, the police said.
The simultaneous raids were carried out by the Philippine National Police together with the Armed Forces of the Philippines to serve search warrants for loose firearms and illegal possession of explosives, according to Lieutenant Colonel Chitadel Gaoiran, spokesperson for the Calabarzon police.
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