Statement of
Chairman, Laban ng Masa

We deplore the arrest of Jose Ma. Sison. The self-righteous glee of the National Security Adviser in his TV appearance exposed the sinister involvement of the Arroyo administration in this sordid affair.

The use of deception, solitary confinement, and denial of medication are standard practices in the Philippines under Marcos and Arroyo. We are alarmed over reports that the Dutch authorities, too, applied these methods on Sison.

It is sad if the Dutch authorities today abandon their country’s proud tradition of providing refuge to persecuted political dissenters. They now seem to fall into the hypocritical schemes of Arroyo and Bush in the so-called “war on terror.” While pretending to respect human rights, Arroyo allows extra-judicial killings and disappearances of activists and legitimate critics. While railing against international terrorism, Bush supports the Florida-based gangs who continue to commit terrorist attacks against the people of Cuba.

Laban ng Masa has condemned the murders of Rolly Kintanar and Art Tabara. We fully understand the desire of the widows of Kintanar and Tabara to seek justice for their husbands.

We expect the Dutch authorities to respect the rights of Jose Ma. Sison, including his personal and health needs, and hope that his arrest and detention will not just be part of the pattern of threats and harassment instigated by the Arroyo and Bush governments