[Statement] No to militarist approaches to solve the nation’s problems! -TFDP

No to militarist approaches to solve the nation’s problems!

Task Force Detainees of the Philippines (TFDP) is deeply concerned with the Mindanao-wide declaration of martial law and its effects on human rights.

To begin with, Proclamation No. 55 declaring a state of national emergency on account of lawless violence is still in place.

Is the Duterte administration admitting that it is powerless to curtail and contain lawless elements without special powers such as martial law? Is not the response too heavy-handed to handle the Maute group?

TFDP believes that the declaration of martial law in Mindanao is a slippery slope and will be at the expense of human rights, justice and peace. Innocent civilians will become the victims. We might end up creating a bigger monster – a dictator – rather than solving the age-old problems of injustice, discrimination and maldevelopment in Mindanao and the entire country.

History has proven that martial law under the Marcos regime did not solve the nation’s problems. It only created longer-lasting problems which we still grapple with to this very day – poverty, inequality, maldevelopment, injustice, exclusion.

History has also proven that a hardline, militarist approach to resolve issues underlying the secessionist and even the religious fundamentalism now spreading will not result to a climate of peace and justice. It will only fan the flames of protest and rebellion.

Criminal elements in Mindanao and elsewhere are a police matter. Let excellent police work anchored on human rights and solid investigation efforts be allowed to proceed.

Revoke the martial law declaration!

No to militarist approaches to solve the nation’s problems!

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