Absence of Yuletide-truce is how Grinch-like Duterte steals Christmas – PAMALAKAYA
Manila, Philippines – The militant fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) on Tuesday lambasted President Rodrigo Duterte for its decision not to declare a Christmas truce with the communist New People’s Army (NPA) which is a yearly tradition for both parties to observe the yuletide season and to respect the cultural tradition of the Filipino people.
The group said rural communities especially the peasant and fishing sector are the ones affected by Duterte’s rejection of a suspension of military operations (SOMO).
“Duterte is the only President in the history to break the annual tradition of declaring a ceasefire in time of the holiday season as a respect to the welfare and cultural traditions of the people. Absence of SOMO is tantamount to stealing the holiday spirit of Christmas from the people by ordering his troops to continue and even pursue its military operations in the countryside,” Fernando Hicap, PAMALAKAYA Chairperson said in a statement.
President Duterte’s decision is after he declared the CPP-NPA as terrorist organizations and ordered mass arrests of alleged NPA-sympathizers including legal leftist organizations and activists.
“Duterte is no different from the grumpy, bitter fictional character Grinch who sabotages the Christmas celebration,”
“We assail this unprecedented decision of President Duterte and call on the resumption of the peace negotiations between his government and the National Democratic Front (NDF) in the name of a just and lasting peace,” ended Hicap. ###