[The Morong 43 are health workers who were arrested in February 2010 by units of the Armed Forces of the Philippines while they were attending a seminar in the coastal town of Morong in Rizal Province. The army accused them of being members of the banned New People’s Army.–Frontlines ed].
The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) today welcomed President Benigno Aquino’a order for the Department of Justice to withdraw charges against the Marong 43 as a boost of goodwill for the forthcoming resumption of peace negotiations.
Formal peace negotiations between the Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP) and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) are scheduled to resume in February 2011, in Oslo, Norway.
The withdrawal of charges against the Morong 43 is expected to be finalized by the DOJ [Department of Justice] on Monday and pave the way for the immediate release of the detained health workers. Aquino’s order came weeks after repeatedly insisting that he cannot do anything except to await the court’s action, despite recognizing defects in the arrest of detainees and despite the fact that they have yet to be brought to court.
“The CPP and the revolutionary forces congratulate the Morong 43, their families, colleagues and supporters for their tenacious struggle and outstanding victory. These serve as inspiration in the fight of thousands of other victims of military abuses to defend their rights and in the effort to seek redress for the grave injustices inflicted on them by the puppet reactionary state and its fascist forces.” Continue reading