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Arroyo Regime Tries but Fails to Gloss Over its Extrajudicial Killings of Political Opponents

By Prof. Jose Maria Sison
NDFP Chief Political Consultant
29 June 2006

By using the ploy of abolishing the death penalty for the worst common criminals, the Arroyo regime tries but fails to gloss over its extrajudicial killings of hundreds of political opponents. The whole world knows Oplan Bantay Laya is a national campaign plan to attack the people in suspected guerrilla fronts and those who oppose the regime in the legal political arena.

Philippine and international human rights organizations have documented the extrajudicial killings of 690 men and women and the abduction and probable torture and murder of 180 others. All the victims are known to have actively exercised their freedom of opinion and expression, have opposed the policies of the Arroyo regime and have called for the ouster of Gloria M. Arroyo and for a change of government.

Gloria M. Arroyo and her cabinet oversight committee on internal security are directing and micro-managing Oplan Bantay Laya for the vain purpose of weakening and destroying the broad united front of opposition forces by unleashing all-out war against the armed revolutionary movement as well as against the legal democratic movement.

They have boasted that they could use the abolition of the death penalty for the worst common criminals to effect my deportation from The Netherlands to the Philippines. They are once again showing off that they can extend their hand of persecution to where I am. In fact, they are merely exposing themselves as ignoramuses in international law.

The European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) and the Refugee Convention prevent the Dutch government from returning me to the Philippines. Article 3 of the ECHR prohibits the Dutch government from forcing me to return to the Philippines or any other country where I am at risk of being subjected to torture, inhuman and degrading treatment or punishment.

The extrajudicial killings and the abductions of the political opponents of the Arroyo regime underscore the condition of rampant torture and inhuman and degrading treatment in the Philippines. The abolition of the death penalty for the worst common criminals fails to dispel the fact that hundreds of the political opponents of the regime have been murdered and abducted for probable torture and murder.

There is no extradition treaty between the Dutch and Manila governments. Even if there were one, politically-motivated charges invalidate a request for extradition. From year to year, the Arroyo regime fabricates and hurls the charges of rebellion and the common crime of murder against me. But these have no factual and legal basis. Under Philippine and international law, the Manila government has no jurisdiction over my person while I am in The Netherlands. And neither has the Dutch government any jurisdiction over Philippine events and circumstances.

According to the Philippine Supreme Court in its recent ruling against General Order No. 5 of Proclamation No. 1017, there are no acts of terrorism in Philippine law and jurisprudence. The US, European and other governments have made fools of themselves by listing me as a "terrorist" upon the urging of the Arroyo regime. Until now, no government dares to start any criminal investigation or prosecution on this foolish allegation against me. ###

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