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Press Statement

The US-Directed GMA-Reyes Tandem Blocks Formal GRP-NDFP Talks

By Prof. Jose Maria Sison
Chief Political Consultant
National Democratic Front of the Philippines
July 30, 2003

So long as President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and Secretary of National Defense Angelo Reyes are bound together as rabid puppets of the US, they will continue to block the resumption of formal talks in the peace negotiations between the Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP) and National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP).

Their trick in preventing the peace negotiations is to insult and challenge the NDFP by repeatedly telling it to capitulate or else suffer the worst of military campaigns. The way of capitulation offered is the immediate signing of a "final peace agreement" one-sidedly made by the GRP. The worst of military campaigns are already being waged under the pretext of war against terrorism and are sustained by US military intervention and increased military supplies from the Pentagon.

Under the direction of the US, Reyes has unleashed massive military campaigns against 12 selected guerrilla fronts of the New People’s Army (NPA) since 2001. These military campaigns have failed to intimidate the revolutionary movement. Instead, the NPA has been growing in strength and advancing. The military strategists of the GRP fearfully anticipate that the NPA would be able to wipe out more of the reactionary armed forces when NPA regional strike units get into full swing and use scores of guerrilla fronts as staging areas for tactical offensives.

Nonetheless, the main interest of the US is to scuttle the GRP-NDFP peace negotiations because it wants to escalate its military intervention, build up the infrastructure for its military forces, proceed from having access rights to having basing rights and thereby make the Philippines a reinforced base for US aggression in East Asia.

Relatedly, the US is behind the scenes pushing the amendment of the 1987 GRP constitution in order to align its bill of rights to the US Patriot Act, unleash state terrorism and remove the provisions derived from the Miranda doctrine and likewise those restricting the declaration of martial law, to cast away the provisions on economic sovereignty and the national patrimony and to remove the national restrictions on foreign investments as well as the provisions banning foreign military bases, foreign troops and nuclear and other weapons of mass destruction.

Thanks to the expose made by the July 27 protest action of 300 soldiers, including 70 officers, we learn that General Angelo Reyes has been systematically creating an atmosphere of terror in Mindanao and fouling up the peace negotiations between the GRP and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) by masterminding the terrorist bombings in addition to ordering the unwarranted assault on the MILF in the Buliok complex last February.

Macapagal Arroyo has brought down the Philippine economy by toeing the US line of "free market" globalization. But she imagines that she can obscure the economic and social plight of the people and terrorize those resisting her rotten policies by welcoming US military intervention and increased US military supplies to her armed forces. Thus, she has practically conceded to General Reyes presidential powers over matters handled by the Cabinet Oversight Committee.

The public should know that the NDFP is ever ready to resume peace negotiations with the GRP in accordance with The Hague Joint Declaration of 1992 and subsequent agreements. Unfortunately, the Arroyo-Reyes tandem directed by the US stands in the way of the peace negotiations. The NDFP might have to wait for a new president, unless Arroyo dismisses Reyes and adjusts her policy regarding the GRP-NDFP peace negotiations. ###

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