Philippine government response to reports on attacks and atrocities by Communist rebels: What else is new? It’s business as usual

In this photo taken Nov. 23, 2016, members of the New People’s Army communist rebels with face painted to conceal their identities, stand in formation during ceremonies before a news conference held at their guerrilla encampment tucked in the harsh wilderness. AP/File photo
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MANILA, Philippines — Malacañang is not surprised by the successive attacks staged by the New People’s Army, saying it was “business as usual” for rebels to stage such atrocities.
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“It’s business as usual. When we’re talking peace, they (NPA) were attacking. Now that we’re not talking peace, they are attacking. So what else is new?” presidential spokesman Harry Roque said in a press briefing Monday.
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Roque said the military is prepared to counter the threat posed by the communist guerillas.
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“It’s continuous attacks from them. And of course, the armed forces is, of course, ready and able to deal with them, as shown in the recent incident in Nasugbu,” he said, referring to the encounter in Batangas last week.
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The military has recorded 47 atrocities involving the NPA as of November, the month Duterte terminated the peace negotiations with communist rebels.
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The incidents include harassment and ambush of soldiers and kidnapping of civilians. The military has mounted 73 operations against the rebels in the same period. A total of 264 NPA members were either killed or arrested by government forces while 573 voluntarily surrendered since the peace talks were halted on February 4.
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Duterte formally ended the peace talks with the communists through Proclamation No. 360 issued last November 23.
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The president blamed the rebels for the collapse of the talks, saying they were pushing for a coalition government, a proposal that he said would force the government to “share” the country’s sovereignty.
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In the proclamation, Duterte said the Communist Party of the Philippines, the National Democratic Front and the NPA “failed to show its sincerity and commitment in pursuing genuine and meaningful peace negotiation” when it engaged in acts of violence and hostilities that endangered the lives of innocent people.
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The president has ordered the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process and the government negotiating panel to cancel all peace talks and meetings with their communist counterparts.
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He has also announced plans to issue an order declaring the CPP, NPA and NDF as terrorist groups and has threatened to issue a crackdown against their legal fronts.
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The military has urged communist rebels to lay down their arms or “face the consequences.”
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2 Responses to “Philippine government response to reports on attacks and atrocities by Communist rebels: What else is new? It’s business as usual”

  1. Brittius Says:

    Reblogged this on Brittius.

  2. daveyone1 Says:

    Reblogged this on World Peace Forum.

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