“In the strongest possible terms, we condemn Duterte for his threats to declare martial law. Despite knowing the violations of human rights and civil liberties that martial law entails, Duterte unacceptably dangles this threat to the people tonight. As if the ongoing killings, bombing and strafing of communities, illegal arrests, and other state-sponsored violence is not enough, the president still wants to intensify its brutal fascist attacks against the people.”
This is the statement of League of Filipino Students (LFS) national spokesperson JP Rosos following the pronouncements of President Duterte to declare martial rule in Mindanao on Thursday.
“After seven months in power, Duterte is becoming more and more like Marcos. He is more than willing to kill the Filipino people and employ state terrorism across the country. Even before he declare martial law, either in Mindanao or the whole country, there are already countless human rights violations committed by the regime,” said Rosos,
Rosos noted that like the dark days of Marcos rule, violations of human rights and civil liberties persist. He added that the regime has spilled the blood of several thousands of Filipinos.
“Under his war on drugs, President Duterte unapologetically killed more than 8,000 people already. After the declaration of all-out war this February, 18 civilians – mostly farmers and members of the national minorities – are already killed. Since June 2016 there have been more than 14, 600 cases of threats, intimidation, and harassment of activists, more than 4,100 cases of indiscriminate firing in communities and about 397 illegal arrests without detention. Up to date, 402 political prisoners still languish in jail,” Rosos noted.
“Duterte’s militaristic and fascist approach makes us question what kind of change he wants to pursue. Definitely, it is not for the people. Far from his claims of being a beacon of hope for the people, Duterte is treading the path of a tyrannical ruler,” Rosos added.
Rosos also pointed out that Duterte, like Marcos, is a “proud fascist and killer”. The youth leader noted that the just like the late dictator, Duterte justifies his violations of human rights and civil liberties. Rosos noted that Duterte’s series of fascist pronouncements has proved that it will mobilize every state machinery to maintain this exploitative and oppressive social order even at the expense of killing thousands of Filipinos.
“We are enraged that Duterte keeps on going about how he wanted to use the military and police to intensify the bloody attacks against the people. We will not less this pass. More protests are underway to further denounce this regime. It is clear as day that this is far from the change that we want,” Rosos said.
“Duterte’s fascist moves only validate the need to struggle to replace the current system that perpetuates injustices. The youth, as pag-asa ng bayan, vow to intensify the plight for genuine change and struggle for national democracy,” Rosos added. ###