By Angel De Mesa
National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) Bicol denounced the GRP cancellation on the supposed 5th round of Peace Talks after the declaration of martial Law in Mindanao last May 27, 2017.
Despite the success of the past formal talks and preparation of NDFP for the 5th round to address the Comprehensive Agreement on Socio-economic Reforms, GRP strongly reiterated that they will not welcome the steps of NDFP to pursue and continue the peace talks until there are no befitting conditions.
But according to the NDFP Bicol, the gist of GRP’s statement is the ultimatum for the CPP to withdraw its call to ponder the fight against the fascist element of the government, leading the NPA to enter in a bilateral ceasefire even without the agreement on socio-economic reforms.
According Presidential Peace Adviser Jesus Dureza, it is not the revolutionary movement nor the civilians were the target of Martial Law, that is why there is no reason for the NDFP to strengthen the military operations against the government forces.
Contrary to Dureza’s statement, 9th Infantry Division in Bicol admitted that instead of terrorism, stringent monitoring on NPAs are their priority in the region after raising red alert status.
“It is expected that AFP and its auxiliary forces will abuse and use martial law alibis to strengthen its repression and combat operations in the country side,” according to NDFP Bicol spokesperson Maria Roja Banua.
The fear of countless human rights violations was also seen as an effect for declaration most especially to those human rights defenders and activist.
NDFP Bicol demands explanation on the reasons why civilians and revolutionary group were mainly affected if the government’s target in their operations is the terrorist group Maute.
Until now that military operations continue, thousands of families were already displaced in Marawi City based on reports. On the second day of Martial Law, 260 civilians were arrested because they couldn’t present IDs; 1,800 families evacuated suffering from hunger because of food blockade; and 30 women composed of Lumad, Moro, pastors were interrogated. There has been also reports of killings due to massive air strikes duly ordered by Pres. Duterte and also cases of illegal arrest of peasant leaders in Maragusan, Compostela Valley headed by 66th IB.
“Not until military forces stop the attacks on the civilians and the communities, units of NPA will not stop its offense to defend the life of the people and their living”, said Banua.
Any time that the GRP panel is ready to face the negotiation, NDFP is ready to return to the table to promote the rights and welfare of the people. (BaretangBikolnon.com)