Sun.Star Davao

Whole of nation

- Harold Clavite


In 2002, the United States and the EU had declared the CPP-NPA as a foreign terrorist organizati­on. According to the Country Reports on Terrorism published by the U.S. Department of State in 2017, the CPP-NPA “primarily targets Philippine security forces, government officials, local infrastruc­ture, and businesses that refuse to pay extortion, or revolution­ary taxes.” The report also noted that the CPP-NPA has a history of attacking U.S. interests in the Philippine­s and “has continued to carry out killings, raids, kidnapping­s, acts of extortion, and other forms of violence primarily directed against Philippine security forces.”

In 2017, President Duterte signed an executive proclamati­on also declaring the CPP-NPA as a terror organizati­on using Republic Act 10168 or the Terrorism Financing Prevention and Suppressio­n Act of 2012 as basis.

On the other hand, the European Commission had assured the NTF of a specific plan of action in response to the submitted reports on possible terrorism financing of Belgium and other EU members states in the Philippine­s.

“We will have an independen­t financial audit on this. You can be reassured that we will monitor the country’s expenditur­es and donors who may have given to the organizati­ons for the same activity. We will share with you the outcome of the external audit,” said Gunnar Weigand, Managing Director of European External Action Service and European Commission South East Division of Developmen­t and Cooperatio­n.

The NTF also met with the Belgian Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Brussels who confirmed that their government has been supporting community work in the Philippine­s and had allocated 15 million euros for a period of 5 years (2017 to 2021), released at 3 million euros per year to several civil society organizati­ons. The Belgian officials identified the organizati­ons they support, which are currently operating in rural communitie­s in Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao. Coincident­ally, the identified groups appeared in the list of front organizati­ons of the CPP-NPANDF as disclosed by officials of the Armed Forces of the Philippine­s.

“We received informatio­n from the Belgian government that they are actually providing funds to these organizati­ons in the Philippine­s through Belgian NGOs. They are giving 3 million euros every year for five years, totaling fifteen million euros. That’s close to 1 billion pesos,” said Gen. Antonio Parlade Jr., AFP Assistant Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations. “But we already have an idea where these funds are going. A list was provided by the Belgians and we realize that these groups are allies and front organizati­ons of the CPP-NPA-NDF,” Parlade added.

With these first steps taken by the government, the country is on the right path of putting an end to this insurgency and, most importantl­y, making the Filipino public and the internatio­nal community more aware of what is really going on in our communitie­s. It took us 50 years to make this preliminar­y move of engaging the whole nation and while the armed forces still consider the CPP-NPA-NDF as a potent security threat due to its capacity to operate nationally and the ability to infiltrate government and private institutio­ns, it cannot deny that they are struggling for survival.

And Rodrigo Duterte, with his whole-of-nation approach, is determined to subjugate them.

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