Palace warns foreign activists on restrictions during Apec
Protests are allowed but not in all places, Malacañang said Friday when asked about the presence of foreign activists opposing the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) Summit to be held in Manila next week.
“Again, we have always said that the Philippines offers a vast democratic space. However, due to the security policies that we have laid down, they will be prevented from conducting their demonstrations in those spaces,” Deputy Presidential Spokesperson Abigail Valte said.
Valte said the rule on rally permits remain the same, meaning the protesters would need to get the permit from the local government unit (LGU) that covers the demonstration area.
“PNP (Philippine National Police) will continue to impose, as they always have, a maximum tolerance policy,” she added.
Valte said there is no order for LGUs to ban protests in certain areas, especially those near the venues of the Apec events.
“However, I do want to make a distinction as to the areas that have been closed off to traffic namely Roxas Boulevard for the duration of the 16th to the 20th. So there are restrictions as to traffic, which includes foot traffic as well,” she explained.
The International League of Peoples’ Struggle (ILPS) on Friday held a press conference in Manila on Friday criticizing the Apec Summit. It said Apec is “peddling a lie of building a better world.” Among the foreign activists present at the event were ILPG secretary general Malcolm Guy from Canada and Palestinian freedom fighter Leila Khaled.