The resolution from the Regional Law Enforcement Coordinating Committe (RLECC) that says to ‘conduct Tokhang to known left-leaning personalities in the government, media and other entities’ poses a great threat to civil liberties and peoples’ lives. This must be recalled immediately!
This style of operation, carried out for Duterte’s war on drugs, killed more than 30,000 individuals. The Oplan Tokhang only served as an example of police brutality and state terrorism in how it completely disregarded rule of law and bastardized human rights.
In the context of an unstable political situation wherein government critics are portrayed as enemies of the state, this same style of execution can be used to kill those who are vocal in their criticism of unfair government policies and mining and dam projects, like local human rights defenders in the Cordillera and leaders and members of the Cordillera Peoples Alliance.
We’ve seen how innocent individuals under mere suspicion were killed in the conduct of this regime’s war on drugs. The same could happen to any individual suspected as a communist rebel or labeled as terrorist without factual basis nor due process to prove such allegations.
Mirroring the case of the innocent victims of Tokhang, the Cordillera police has been very active in red-tagging, labeling Cordillera activists and organizations as communist fronts without evidence. It is questionable how they came to identify people and organizations as communist fronts or terrorists when no fact is presented to support such claims.
During COVID, the red-tagging and terrorist-labeling of CPA and its leaders have intensified, and its Chairperson Windel Bolinget and Secretary General Bestang Dekdeken are currently facing trumped-up charges.
We call on the RLECC to immediately recall this dangerous resolution.
We call on government agencies and the public to uphold human rights and not tolerate more extrajudicial killings of activists.
Stop the attacks!