06 December 2010
We condemn Armed Forces of the Philippines spokesperson Col. Antonio Parlade Jr.’s statement that National Democratic Front chief negotiator Luis Jalandoni’s call for the release of the Morong 43 is an “affirmation” that the health workers are indeed members of the New People’s Army.
As an organization that has also called and mobilized for the release of the 43 health workers, we from the Kilusang Mayo Uno, find the AFP’s statement both idiotic and dangerous. This “guilt by association” ill-logic simply has no basis, and everyone the military brands as NPA are hunted down and killed.
The AFP remains in a “state of denial” over its humongous mistakes in arresting, torturing and detaining the Morong 43. It is now using ill logic to justify the injustice that it committed without sufficient intelligence work and without following due processes.
The injustice that is being committed against the Morong 43 is crystal clear by now and one does not have to be organizationally linked with the NPA to call for the health workers’ immediate and unconditional release. Even lawyers, ecumenical groups, and health workers from all over the world have called for the Morong 43’s release.
It is simply the duty of all Filipinos who have at least a sense of justice to call and work for the release of the Morong 43. We understand that the NDF chief negotiatior’s call is in fulfillment of this basic duty.
It is precisely this guilt-by-association ill-logic that has been the AFP’s justification for carrying out the extra-judicial killing of more than 1,000 activists, including almost a hundred trade-union leaders and activists, under the Arroyo and Aquino regimes. The fact that the AFP persists in using this canard bodes ill for the state of human and trade-union rights in the country – a warning, no less, that it will go on attacking organizations which it thinks are linked with the NPA.
Reference: Bong Labog, KMU chairperson