21 February 2011
We, National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) peace consultants and staff and other political prisoners at the Philippine National Police Custodial Center in Camp Crame, denounce utterances by the top leaders and mouthpieces of the military organization of the Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GPH) that only show their despise and effort to sabotage the peace process.
Philippine Army chief Lt. Gen. Arturo Ortiz arrogantly stated that they have no intention at all respecting the Joint Agreement on Safety and Immunity Guarantees (JASIG) against arrests and other hostile acts and harm against peace panel members, consultants and staff of either side. Gen. Ortiz outrightly declared that they will continue to arrest NDFP consultants and personnel even if they have JASIG- protected. To prove this, he ordered the arrest of NDFP consultant Alan Jazmines on the very eve of the resumption of peace talks between the NDFP and the GPH and totally disregard Jazmines’ protest against the arrest as he is a JASIG holder and can prove so.
The GPH military is intentionally mocking and sabotaging the peace process with the arrest and insistence that they will continue to do more of the same.
Philippine Army spokesperson Col. Antonio Parlade followed-up Gen. Ortiz statement of contempt of the peace process by deriding the NDFP demand for the release of all political prisoners in compliance with the Comprehensive Agreement for Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law (CARHRIHL) and as goodwill measure for the continuation and progress of the peace talks. Col. Parlade made a sweeping statement that the political prisoners are actually guerilla fighters and therefore should be charged and should continue to be imprisoned for what he falsely termed as “atrocities” against government forces.
The peace process will not reach any meaningful progress for as long as such fascist and anti-peace positions of the GPH military continue to hold sway.
For the peace talks to have any prospect of meaningfully continuing and for real gains to be achieved in the whole process, the GPH and its armed forces and other agencies must be made to comply with the demand for the immediate release of all detained NDFP peace consultants and staff and some 400 other political prisoners and the full and hampered implementation henceforth of the JASIG, CARHRIHL and other standing peace agreements.
For Reference: Political Prisoners detained in Camp Crame
(Sgd.) Prospero F. Agudo
(Sgd.) Jovencio Balweg
(Sgd.) Alan V. Jazmines
(Sgd.) Eduardo O. Sarmiento
(Sgd.) Eduardo R. Serrano