President Rodrigo Roa Duterte, in his speech during the closing ceremony of the 31st Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summit and Related Summits at the Philippine International Convention Center on November 14, 2017. KING RODRIGUEZ/PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO
DAVAO CITY — President Rodrigo Duterte again lambasted the leftist groups especially the New People’s Army (NPA) because of their continued acts of violence, recently.
Including the involvement of a four-month-old infant in an NPA ambush in Bukidnon last November 9.
According to the chief executive, he wants to formalize or announce NPA’s category as a terrorist group and not a rebel group. He also wants to file cases against all group members involved in spreading violence like murder and arson.
“Before, we recognized them as legitimate rebels. But with their continued depredations and killing of innocent people, I’ll be issuing a proclamation. I will remove them from the category of a legal entity or at least a semi-movement which would merit our attention, placing them as, the same with America, — terrorist,” President Duterte said.
Since 2002, the United States has considered CPP-NPA as foreign terrorist organization.
President Duterte also blamed the rebel group for the price hike in common goods.
“Because NPA extorts. Even the farmers pay. It is an added cost to the price. All the businessmen here burned the — but it’s providing work for the countryside and yet they are destroying the very essence of the industry. That is the reason for the increase, they extort,” he added.
With regards to the peace talks, he also questioned the group: why would they talk to him if they consider him a fascist and an anomalous leader.
In the end, the Chief Executive warned that he will strengthen military offensives against the NPA and the groups supporting [these rebels] will also be held accountable.
“Now it’s a great conspiracy between Bayan even the—they are in conspiracy with the rebellion going on. We will study and maybe we will have a crackdown there somewhere. So all of those, pretending to be the — speaking for the people, those quasi-stuff you are talking about, you say it is legitimate and yet you are — I said continuing the depredations, putting industries down and making it hard for the people to make a living,” Duterte said. — Rosalie Coz | UNTV News & Rescue