(Photo credits: Alex D. Lopez/davaotoday.com)
On June 23, a month since the declaration of martial law in Mindanao, Kabataan Partylist joins the youth and students of various schools as they held actions across different schools and areas today.
“Despite the scapegoat of eliminating terror, the only ones eliminated here are the people,” Kabataan Partylist Rep. Sarah Elago said.
“In addition, martial law has only been used as a scapegoat to terrorize civilians, rebels and indigenous peoples who are not part of the Maute group,” Elago added.
The youth solon slammed the continued insistence of the United States government, with the help of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, to instigate terror and war and to coerce Duterte into declaring a nationwide martial law.
“It is of great benefit to the US and AFP to continue martial law and expand it nationwide, as a pretext for further military operations, human rights violations, and heightened fascism on civilians,” Elago said.
“We condemn the US-AFP for further letting down our already impoverished evacuees and citizens through food blockades, and the interrogation of hundreds of civilians and tagging them as part of the Maute and other terrorist groups. We further condemn their continued instigation, through spreading fake news and erroneous, contradicting statements, as well as Islamophobic and terrorist hysteria, to further coax the President into enforcing a nationwide martial law,” Elago added.
The youth solon added that despite all of these, and despite an earlier declaration of independent foreign policy, Duterte has merely been complacent of the heightened US presence, citing the long time military relations between the US-AFP.
“We call on the people to hold Duterte accountable for continuing martial law despite the damages. The people are dismayed that instead of the people he is bound to serve, he put his ego and the military’s interest first and foremost. We further hold accountable the Liberal Party and other factions of the ruling elite, for fanning the flames of war and favoring martial law, and choosing business interests over the people!” Elago said.
“We call on the Duterte administration to heed the call of the people: End martial law now!,” Elago concluded.
The groups vow to hold more Black Friday protests in the coming days. ###