Reds using ‘threaten me’ tactics to prove relevance: Parlade

MANILA � In a bid to prove themselves relevant during the observation of International Human Rights Day, allies of the communist rebels are using the time-old adage of "threaten me", a ranking official of the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF ELCAC) said Friday.

Major General Antonio Parlade, Jr., in a statement forwarded to the Philippine News Agency, was reacting to claims of Karapatan Secretary General Cristina Palabay who said that she received a series of messages from an unidentified cellphone number on Dec. 10 threatening to have her raped before being thrown into the sea.

"You alleged to have received death threats by phone and through text messages from anonymous civilians. Are you willing to submit your phone for forensics for us to determine where those threats came from? We are very sure its another case of 'threaten me'. Your AFP has long been an advocate of human rights. The question is: Are you?" said Parlade, who is also Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Deputy Chief-of-Staff for Civil-Military Operations.

He added that he finds it odd that the alleged sender took the time to threaten Palabay during the commemoration of International Human Rights Day.

"Now on the celebration of IHR Day, you are suddenly on the center stage again. Suddenly you are again at the forefront of human rights defenders? Hypocrite," he said.

Such tactics, he said, smacks of cheap propaganda in a bid to get mileage from the International Human Rights Day.

If Karapatan is truly an organization for the protection of human rights, then Palabay and her allies would have roundly condemned the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People's Army (CPP-NPA) for recruiting minors and using them to fight in the front-lines, killing them needlessly in the process, he said.

"We asked you where you were when children were being recruited and getting killed by joining the NPA and you won't say a word. We waited for you to respond when CHR (Commission on Human Rights) condemned the NPA for recruiting 16-year old Litboy Binongcasan, resulting in his killing in Butuan City but we never heard from you. What about the NPA landmine? What about the very young children rescued in Bacolod City from the clutches of the NPA? No, they are not part of your mandate. That will reduce the funding you are getting from foreign NGOs," he added.

The CPP-NPA is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines.

"Your fascist CPP-NPA has been recruiting and killing our children. Your fascist group would not want us to be involved in your forum to answer issues against the government, but there you are on the streets again. What for? Cheap propaganda," he said. (PNA)

Source: Philippines News Agency

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