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Bacolod City, Philippines Monday, April 6, 2020
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Army violates ceasefire, NPA says


The Army’s 3rd Infantry Division yesterday advised the New People’s Army to stay in their lairs, so as  not to start chaos, as it brushed aside accusations of alleged ceasefire violations.

    The government's sovereign authority to declare a unilateral ceasefire is not tied down to any arbitrary conditions of any political or armed groups such as the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front, said Capt. Cenon Pancito, 3ID Public Affairs office chief.

       What the 3ID has suspended is  direct offensive action against the CPP-NPA-NDF, Pancito stressed.

    Ka Juanito Magbanua, spokesman of the Apolinario Gatmaitan Command, issued a statement strongly condemning the continued military operations in the hinterlands of Moises Padilla, Ilog, Candoni, Sipalay City, Kabankalan City, Hinoba-an and Binalbagan in Negros Occidental, and Guihulngan City in Negros Oriental, which is a violation of their declared unilateral ceasefire.

    Magbanua accused the Armed Forces of the Philippines of using the COVID- 19 issue to justify their combat operations in places they deem to be under the control of the revolutionary movement.

    “These show the deception of the US-Duterte regime behind its unilateral ceasefire declaration that in truth aims to destroy the revolutionary movement, while peoples of the world are fighting the COVID-19,” Magbanua claimed.

    While the 3ID suspends its direct offensive action against the CPP-NPA-NDF, Pancito said “it does not mean that the NPA rebels are allowed to terrorize the people, or for them to start their evil intentions in the barangays”.

    He also pointed out that the declaration of unilateral ceasefire is founded on the government sovereign social contract with the people which is the framework of the sovereignty of the state and the government.

    The CPP-NPA declared a ceasefire against government forces from March  26 to April 15, while the government unilateral ceasefire took effect March 19 to April 15.

    Juanito called all military troops to follow their ceasefire declaration, and they should remain in their detachments and help in serving the people.

    Pancito stressed that that the declaration of a unilateral ceasefire by the government will not limit its sovereign authority to perform and execute its legal mandate, including law enforcement, public safety and security operations, and  maintaining the operationalization of all necessary legal instruments and legal processes.

“Our ceasefire does not mean that the NPAs are allowed to terrorize the people. The Army soldiers will definitely stop NPA illegal activities as reported by the masses,” he said.*


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