Subject: [Karapatan HR update] Marcos’ victims to Duterte: Martial law was never good
25 May 2017
Marcos’ victims to Duterte: Martial law was never good
“How can martial law be ‘very good,’ Pres. Duterte? Are the arrests, detention, torture, killings during martial law good? The mindset of the military from Marcos and up to now remains the same, that anybody who they consider an enemy of the state may be targetted. What is good with that?”
Thus said Selda chairperson Marie Hilao-Enriquez, who called on the President to immediately lift the declaration, as they called on the people of including Sulu and Basilan to be vigilant and guard against abuses and atrocities brought about by martial law.
“It was during the Marcos-imposed martial law that my sister, Liliosa, died at the hands of her torturers who are members of the AFP. Is this good Mr. President, that people are killed? My sister, a young girl and a campus journalist then, was not a terrorist. She was a freedom fighter,” said Hilao-Enriquez.
Selda, organization of former political detainees, majority of those who were detained during martial law, said Defense Sec. Delfin Lorenzana’s statements that they aim to resolve “all problems in Mindanao” including the NPA, are not just a slip of the tongue.
“These fascists and US stooges, Lorenzana, Gen. Eduardo Ano and National Security Adviser Hermogenes Esperon, are the greatest threats to the people of Mindanao. They are fanning the terror threats to justify attacks against the people, including revolutionary forces who are waging just wars,” said Hilao-Enriquez.
Hilao-Enriquez stressed that martial law will not right the wrongs of society.
“Declaring martial law now is the military’s way of sabotaging the peace process between the government and the NDFP. Martial law during Marcos did not bring change. The peace talks can bring about reforms for the people. Martial law is a detriment to just and lasting peace in Mindanao and the rest of the country. This will not resolve the problems why there is a decades-old Bangsamoro struggle in Mindanao,” she added.
Early this year, Pres. Duterte agreed to expedite the process of recognition and reparation of martial law victims. According to Hilao-Enriquez, in a way, it is Duterte’s recognition that there were human rights violations during Marcos’ martial rule.
“Under the Marcos dictatorship, the military reigned over civilian institutions. It’s the point of martial law, to suppress the people through military might. How can he say these atrocities will not happen, when in fact, the military rages on even without martial law,” said Hilao-Enriquez.
Karapatan has documented 55 victims of extrajudicial killings in line with the counter-insurgency program, a number of victims coming from Mindanao who are mostly Lumads and defenders of rights of farmers and national minorities.
“Any State militarist approach will only fan the flames of the people’s resistance. The Filipino people, who have courageously contended with the Marcos dictatorship, will fight back any fascist attack,” Hilao-Enriquez said.
The group called for participation in the Black Friday protest tomorrow, May 26, against martial law, with a march at 3:30pm, from UST to Mendiola. ###
Reference: Marie Hilao-Enriquez, Selda chairperson, 0917-5616800
The Samahan ng Ex-Detainees Laban sa Detensyon at Aresto (SELDA) is an organization of former political prisoners in the Philippines. Founded on December 4, 1984, SELDA was initiated by newly-released political prisoners of the martial law period. SELDA’s primary task is to work for the release of all political prisoners and to see to it that humane treatment of those who are still in detention are complied with by the Philippine authorities. SELDA advocates justice for current and former political prisoners. It calls for the mobilisation of resources in support of political prisoners, former detainees and their families. It carries out legislative advocacy for the indemnification and rehabilitation of political prisoners. SELDA goes into partnership and builds solidarity with concerned individuals and groups for the freedom and welfare of political prisoners and all victims of tyranny.
SELDA National Office: 2/F, Erythrina Bldg., #1 Maaralin corner Matatag Streets,
Brgy. Central District, Diliman, Quezon City 1101, Philippines
Tel: 632-9906595 Fax: 632-4354146
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