On the recent arrest of Vic Ladlad and other NDFP consultants
The Communist Party of the Philippines condemns the recent arrest and incarceration of NDFP consultant Vic Ladlad and his elderly companions based the overused trumped up charges of possessing illegal weapons and explosives. Ladlad’s arrest brings to three the number of consultants the GRP has arrested in the recent months. The other two arrested consultants, Adelberto Silva and Rafael Baylosis, were likewise planted with guns and explosives to justify their arrest and prolonged detention.
In arresting and detaining the three consultants, the Duterte regime flaunts its contempt not only for previously signed agreements such as the Joint Agreement on Safety and Immunity Guarantees (JASIG), but for the peace process as a whole. Ladlad, Silva and Baylosis have publicly participated in all five rounds of the peace negotiations under the Duterte regime and should have been free from surveillance, harassment, search, arrest, detention, prosecution and interrogation. Their arrest threatens the safety of all those who participated and believed in the peace process.
As Prof. Jose Maria Sison stated, it is obvious that Duterte is leaving no space for the possible resumption of the GRP-NDFP peace negotiations. Instead, he has resorted to legal maneuvers and an all-out campaign of vilification in order to scapegoat the CPP, NPA and NDFP as “terrorists” and give him the pretext to establish a fascist dictatorship through martial law and charter change.