CPP denounces defacement, red-tagging of bookstores
The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) today slammed the defacement of two bookstores in Metro Manila as an affront to academic freedom.
On Tuesday, the Popular Bookstore located in Quezon City and the Solidaridad Bookstore in Manila were vandalized with the words ‘NPA terorista’ sprayed on its walls. The Popular Bookstore’s owner was an anti-Martial Law activist during the Marcos dictatorship and was detained in 1973.
CPP Chief Information Officer Marco L. Valbuena said the defacement of the bookstores, known to carry books authored by Prof. Jose Ma. Sison, CPP founding chair and NDFP Chief Political Consultant, among an broad array of books and topics, “is undoubtedly the work of the National Task Force-Elcac and its agents.”
Valbuena said the defacement “clearly aims to send a chilling effect on the academic community and those fighting for academic freedom.”
“This is not the first time that state agents targeted institutions bannering academic freedom,” said Valbuena.
It can be noted that in September 2021, the AFP instigated at least three universities to purge their libraries of books and documents discussing the position of the NDFP in peace negotiations with the Government of the Republic of the Philippines.
Valbuena then warned that if such acts remain unchallenged, it will set a dangerous precedent and bolster the AFP and PNP to step on more educational and cultural territories, possibly including the media, the church and others.
“The red-tagging of the Popular and Solidaridad bookstores are directly linked to the barefaced acts of fascist suppression against the patriotic and democratic forces,” Valbuena emphasized.
However, he pointed out that instead of being terrorized, these tactics are only rousing greater anger among the people, as well as greater interest in progressive and revolutionary thought. (CPP Information Bureau)