Democracy Under Attack in the Philippines

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Vicious violation of democratic rights and scuttling of the GRP-NDFP peace negotiations


More and more individuals and groups are being added to the EU's list of terrorists. Given no chance to defend themselves, and without right of appeal, they are victims of the EU's desire to pacify the Bush junta whilst pursuing a few dirty little aims of its own. Below is the statement of Prof. Jose Maria Sison, chief political consultant of the National Democratic Front of the Philippines, the latest victim of this summary "justice".

 

The European Council has unjustly put my name on the list of so-called terrorists in accordance with the request earlier made by the Dutch government upon the prompting of the US government. My democratic rights are viciously violated. I am criminalized as a “terrorist” without due process. I am defamed and demonized. My life is being threatened. I suffer moral and material damages.



It is completely absurd that I am misrepresented as “terrorist” for being supposedly “linked to” or “in charge of” the New People’s Army (NPA). In fact, I am simply an unemployed teacher, prevented by the Dutch government from working for more than 14 years already and serving as the chief political consultant of the National Democratic Front (NDFP) in its peace negotiations with the Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP).



It is wrong to make me appear as if I were more powerful than such organs of leadership as the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP), the national military staff of the NPA and the National Council of the NDFP, which are all in the Philippines.



The European Council has also unjustly labelled the New People’s Army as “terrorist”. In fact, it is a disciplined revolutionary army led by the CPP. It is the instrument of the Filipino people in fighting for national liberation and democracy.









It is bound by the Bill of Fundamental Rights in the Guide for Establishing the People’s Government, the Rules of the New People’s Army, the NDFP Declaration of Undertaking to Apply the Geneva Conventions and Protocol I and the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect of Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law.



The listing of the NPA and my name as “terrorists” by the European Council has the effect of scuttling the peace negotiations between the GRP and the NDFP. Consequent to the listing, it is no longer advisable to hold these negotiations in Europe where organizations and individuals belonging to or associated with the NDFP in one way or another are vulnerable to being condemned and treated as “terrorists”.



The NDFP cannot allow the members of its negotiating panel, its consultants, staffers and supporters in Europe to be put under duress. It rightfully condemns the scheme of the US and the Macapagal-Arroyo puppet regime to push the revolutionary forces towards capitulation by demonizing them as “terrorists” and threatening them with the brutal power of the US and other imperialists.



The campaign to demonize the revolutionary forces can only unite the people to wage a fiercer armed revolution against the armed counterrevolution. They were not at all cowed by the US-directed Marcos fascist dictatorship and the existence of the US military bases at the peak of the Cold War. There is no reason for them whatsoever to be frightened by US imperialism and a puppet regime that are in the throes of the worst economic and social crisis since the end of World War II



The US and the Macapagal-Arroyo regime have pushed the European governments to scuttle the peace negotiations and to persecute me. I am now in a situation of using much of my time to wage legal battles in court and to generate moral and political support for my just cause.



I also have to guard against foul play by the agents of US imperialism who are now thrilled by the Bush propensity for aggressive war and by his lifting of the ban on assassination of leaders opposed to US imperialism. The listing of my name as “terrorist” by the European Council is calculated to create the political climate for facilitating my extradition and even my assassination.



The US and the Macapagal-Arroyo regime are hell-bent on destroying the people’s revolutionary movement by sheer military force under the pretext of carrying out a war on terrorism. The people and the revolutionary forces have no choice but to defend themselves and defeat their oppressors and exploiters in order to bring about national liberation and democracy.#

















Statewatch has started a campaign to defend Professor Sison. On 9 August 2002, the US State Department listed the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) and the New People's Army (NPA) as "foreign terrorist organizations", encouraging other governments "to take action to

isolate these terrorist organizations, to choke off their sources of financial support, and to prevent their movement across international borders". Since 12 August 2002, the US Treasury Department has listed Jose Maria Sison as a "terrorist" whose assets must be frozen. To read more about the campaign to clear Professor Sison's name or sign a petition in his defence go to
http://www.statewatch.org/news/2002/oct/10sison.htm