Trillanes backs temporary martial law in Sulu to go after ASG
Senator Antonio Trillanes IV on Thursday backed the idea of declaring martial law in Sulu for a “prescribed period only” not only to help exterminate the Abu Sayyaf Group but to disarm all private armed groups and restore order in the area.
“It definitely will help in the ongoing rescue operations. At the very least, declaring martial law in Sulu could help exterminate the Abu Sayyaf, disarm all private armed groups and restore order in the area,” Trillanes, a former Navy officer, said in a text message.
“This was successfully done after the Maguindanao massacre so there’s already a template to its local application,” he said.
Asked if martial law should be imposed in the area indefinitely or for a limited time only, Trillanes said: “It should be for a prescribed period only but subject to extensions when warranted.”
President Benigno Aquino III earlier admitted that he had considered placing the entire province of Sulu under martial law to go after the Abu Sayyaf bandits who were holding foreign and Filipino hostages.
But Mr. Aquino said he decided not to pursue it as it might just generate public sympathy for the Abu Sayyaf bandits.
Senator Vicente “Tito” Sotto III said he would not object if martial law would be declared in areas controlled by the Abu Sayyaf.
“I have no objections. I will agree,” Sotto said during a forum at the Senate on Wednesday.
Senator-elect Panfilo Lacson earlier favored granting President-elect Rodrigo Duterte emergency powers not only to address the traffic problem in the country but also to fight illegal drugs and the Abu Sayyaf.
“Congress should grant the next President emergency powers to solve the traffic problem. Maybe, against illegal drugs and Abu Sayyaf as well,” Lacson wrote on Twitter Tuesday.
He also proposed a ‘tit for tat’ solution against the bandits.
“No better time to address the ASG problem than under President Duterte: kidnap them back or kill them. It may need good very intel work though,” said Lacson. CDG/rga
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