The League of Filipino Students offers prayers and condolences to the friends and relatives of the victims of the bombing in Davao City that claimed the lives of at least 15 and wounded more than 80 people. We stand in solidarity with Davaoenos and the whole Filipino people in demanding justice for all the victims of this terrorist act that purposely targeted civilians to spread fright and havoc in our country.

In strongest possible terms, we condemn this atrocious act and demand to see the perpetrators accountable. While the Abu Sayaff Group has claimed to be the mastermind behind these attacks, we want to remind President Rodrigo Duterte that the US Central Intelligence Agency has created, funded, trained, and operated this terrorist group to justify their imperialist intervention and incursions under the guise of war against terrorism. We also want to jog the President’s memory regarding the involvement of the Armed Forces of the Philippines with ASG operation.

We ask President Duterte to review the large-scale attacks committed by ASG. In 2003, the twin bombing in Davao Airport and Sasa Wharf revealed the involvement of the military. In 2002, suspected CIA agent Michael Merring accidentally blew a bomb in a Davao hotel. These cases tell us that we must scrutinize the recent terrorist attack in Davao and be inquisitive as to which agencies or institutions are involved in planning, funding, and executing the attack.

We also have strong grounds to believe that the Davao bombing was one of the schemes of the US government to create unrest and chaos in the country. It is not news that US has always been in the shadows of different terrorist attacks in the different parts of the world. Throughout history, US has created different armed groups to create havoc and unrest in order to justify its war on terror and aggression. With this, we have reasons to believe that US might have pulled a string or two in orchestrating the bombing to substantiate the increased deployment of American troops and war materiel in the Philippines especially in Mindanao.

We ask President Duterte to look into this and study the involvement of the imperialist US. Also, this incident should not be used as a reason to justify the lopsided Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreeement that will allow the reoccupation of US troops and bases in the country.

Also, we remind President Duterte that his declared ‘state of lawlessness’ should not involve the incursion of human rights in Mindanao. It should not result into a witch-hunt against our Moro brothers and sisters.

While there are forces that want us to fall into chaos, the Filipino people will not succumb to fear. We have a rich history of collectively emerging triumphant over any predicaments. Now, more than ever, is the best time to strengthen our unity, demand justice, collectively struggle for a better Philippine society. ###