STATEMENT: On the extension of Martial Law up to December 2017

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

We vehemently denounce plans to extend martial law until the end of December this year, and possibly even beyond.

This will only subject Mindanao and the nation to greater and graver human rights abuses and offensive operations against the Moro, Lumad and people of Mindanao.

Numerous daily airstrikes and bombings have displaced Moros and other civilians in their hundreds of thousands. Heightened military presence in Lumad and other communities have caused their recent evacuation and suspension of classes in community schools. Attacks against peasants, community leaders and unsuspecting civilians have stepped up. Rape threats hound women, and harassment and illegal detentions increase in number as the army usurped power over the Mindanao landscape.

Martial law, and its imminent extension, has been continuously prodded by US imperialism, in cohorts with their operatives in the AFP and PNP, in its desperate attempt to consolidate control in an ever unstable economic and political landscape in the country and in the Asia-Pacific region. It will also further give the AFP control over suppressing information through contradictory statements and fake news.

We enjoin our colleagues in Congress to be prudent and not act as a rubber stamp for intensified martial law in Mindanao and the nation. Otherwise, at the proper time in the halls of Congress shall we register our staunch dissent against the US’ attempts at intensified fascism in the country. ###