Fisherfolk rejects 2018 US military war games
Manila, Philippines – The militant fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) on Friday slammed Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Chief of Staff Eduardo Año for soliciting military assistance to the United States (U.S.) in the form of Balikatan exercise or war games.
The AFP chief of staff announced a total of 261 agreed joint US-RP military activities after his visit to the U.S. last week for the Mutual Defense Board meeting.
In a statement, the fisherfolk group accused the General Año of being the America’s emissary to the country in order to execute war games that advance the U.S. geopolitical interest in the region while violating the country’s sovereign and territorial rights.
The group strongly opposes war games under the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA), Mutual Defense Treaty (MDT), and the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) for its unequal and one-sided provisions.
“American troops who commit crimes in our soil can easily get away with it because of these unfair military agreements. We fear for another Nicole and Jennifer Laude incidents because of this another set of military exercise,” Fernando Hicap, PAMALAKAYA Chairperson said in a statement.
The group said President Rodrigo Duterte is following the footsteps of his predecessor Benigno Aquino III of increasing the U.S. military presence in the country at the cost of our sovereign rights and security of the Filipino people.
“President Duterte is embracing the same military policy that former President Aquino had carried out. Apparently, Duterte is now the number one lapdog of the country that he used despise,”
“After all the cuss and tirades against the U.S., in the end, it all leads to sheer puppetry,” Hicap added.
The group instead calls for the scrapping of all unequal military pacts with the United States and to totally kick out American troops in the Philippine soil. ###
Fisherfolk slams upcoming Balikatan drill
Manila, Philippines – The militant fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) on Monday expressed opposition on the upcoming Philippines-United States Balikatan (shoulder-to-shoulder) exercise which will be held on May this year.
Balikatan is an annual military exercise in the country involving Filipino and American troops as agreed on PH-U.S. military deals like the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) and Mutual Defense Treaty (MDT).
In a statement, PAMALAKAYA said they are dismayed by President Rodrigo Duterte for letting the military drill to proceed even if he expressed strong criticisms and statements before against U.S. military presence and intervention in our country.
“President Duterte lacks sincerity on his earlier pronouncements to stop all U.S.-Ph military exercise in the country and that he will make all American troops kicked out from our land,”
“We have been opposing these military drills ever since because this is undeniable state intervention and aggression by U.S. military troops under the guise of “combating terrorism’ and ‘humanitarian and civil assistance’. Today’s Balikatan is a plain and simple case of same wine in a different bottle. This Trump-directed military intervention is no different from previous military drills; one-sided and anti-Filipino defense pact between the Philippines in the United States,” Fernando Hicap, PAMALAKAYA Chairperson said in a statement.
Suspend the ongoing Balikatan 2016 – Fisherfolk group
Manila, Philippines – The militant fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (Pamalakaya-Pilipinas) on Thursday calls on the government to suspend the ongoing Balikatan exercises in Panay and Palawan.
The Balikatan exercise is an annual Philippine-US military bilateral training under the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) and the recently passed Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) where the US military can station their bases in our country and use our facilities at will.
Pamalakaya maintain that the water-based military drills often result to disruptions on livelihoods of fishers, as every time war games were held in the coastal areas, local governments impose fishing ban to give blanket security to the US troops.
Fisherfolk slammed SC ruling on EDCA
Manila, Philippines – The militant fisherfolk Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (Pamalakaya-Pilipinas) denounced the Supreme Courts’ (SC) ruling on the constitutionality of the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) yesterday. Voting 10-4, the Supreme Court ruled that EDCA is an Executive Agreement, not a treaty.
The EDCA, which will give more US military access to our sovereignty, was signed on 2014 when United States President Barrack Obama visited the country.
In a statement, Pamalakaya said that US bases will bring fear and havoc to the Filipino people especially to the fisherfolk.