Activists, non-profits protest martial law on 45th anniversary since Marcos rule

by Albert Bataclan, ABS CBN News

 

LOS ANGELES — Even after several decades, Art Garcia’s memories of martial law in the Philippines are still fresh and deep.

“Namatay ang aking asawa at anak sa panahon ng martial law at ayaw ko na sanang gunitain ito pero kailangang ipaalam sa lahat ng mamamayan para hindi na ito maulit.”

Thursday marked the 45th anniversary of the 1972 declaration of martial law, by late president Ferdinand Marcos.

Filipino American organizations in Los Angeles staged simultaneous events, with an uproar against what they say are President Rodrigo Duterte’s authoritarian leanings and his fatal crackdown on illegal drugs.

Gabriela Los Angeles and other activist groups gathered in front the Philippine Consulate building, protesting against what they call the Duterte administration’s brutal anti-crime directive and human rights violations.

Across town, members of the Filipino American Human Rights Alliance Los Angeles and other anti martial law organizations came together for a vigil for the victims of the regime at the Pilipino Workers Center headquarters in Historic Pilipino Town.

Ago Pedilazo of the Filipino American Human Rights Alliance says Filipinos should learn from the lessons of Marcos’ martial law and in their efforts to not let history repeat itself, they continue their fight—with the help of US legislators.

“Gusto namin i-push sa house ang version ng S1055, and sinasabi lang into ay i-limit ang supply ng armas, magkaroon ng leahy vetting procedures—meaning kung may record ng human rights violation sa isang banda, hindi dapat sha magkaroon ng supply, at pangatlo, i-treat mo ang issue ng drug problem as a public health issue.”

Pedilazo says they are hopeful to get the bill to the lower house of Congress within the next three months—and eventually a Senate hearing.

SB-1055 has bi-partisan support, which was co introduced by Republican senator Marco Rubio and Democratic Senator Ben Cardin.

The Bill aims to:

– Restrict arms sales to the Philippine National Police (PNP)
– Provide Leahy Vetting reports on foreign assistance cases related to the PNP
– Provide Annual State Department Report on Chinese and other sources of narcotics to the Philippines
– Provide $25 million of aid for human rights, democracy and public health promotions
Provide State Department reports on US military assurance and arms transfer to the Philippines)
– Restrict arms sales to the Philippine National Police (PNP)

– Provide Leahy Vetting reports on foreign assistance cases related to the PNP

– Provide Annual State Department Report on Chinese and other sources of narcotics to the Philippines

Although their fight is focused against the current Philippine administration, they still demand justice from the Marcos family.

“Filipino Americans and nag lobby at nagpahinto ng military aide sa Marcos regime at nagbulgar ng katiwalian at panloloko ni Marcos.”

 

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  • Santiago Del Mundo
    26 September 2017 at 10:45 pm - Reply

    The Filipino American Human Rights Alliance is one of those overated rated or exaggerated backward organization that perpetuate criminality in the Philippines. And this is why… Have you ever seen any human rights activist, representatives, etc when some low-life riding in tandem criminals are shooting innocent people around? How about during CPP-NPA are attacking. How about the Mautee group in Mindanao,

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