Home NATIONWIDE Red-tagging tinalakay ng NTF-ELCAC, UN expert

Red-tagging tinalakay ng NTF-ELCAC, UN expert

MANILA, Philippines- Nagpulong ang mga opisyal ng National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) at United Nations (UN) expert, kasalukuyang nasa Pilipinas para sa two-week visit para personal na suriin ang “freedom of opinion at expression” sa Pilipinas.

Iprinisenta ng NTF-ELCAC, kasama ang Anti-Terrorism Council, ang mga nagawa, mga hamon at estratehiya para sa hinaharap kay UN Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Opinion and Expression Irene Khan.

“During the press conference, most of the time, she was just absorbing the presentations that we prepared… We briefed her about the mandate of the organization and what it has done for the past five years,” ayon kay NTF-ELCAC executive director Undersecretary Ernesto Torres Jr. sa virtual press briefing ng task force, araw ng Huwebes.

Tinukoy ang kakapusan ng oras, hangad ni Khan na mas mabigyang-linaw ang bagay na ito sa karagdagang pulong. Isa sa mga concern na binanggit ni Khan ay ang usapin ng red-tagging.

“For instance, sa NTF-ELCAC ang concern ay she would like to get further information on the red-tagging issue because alam naman nating lahat, even abroad, NTF-ELCAC is being equated unfairly to red-tagging. She would like to hear more from us kung ano ang ginagawa natin to prevent such things from happening,” ayon kay Torres.

“We eagerly anticipate the opportunity to address any outstanding issues and reinforce the collaborative dialogue that has defined the visit,” dagdag na pahayag nito.

Subalit, nilinaw ni Torres na ang gobyerno ay myroong “no policy on red-tagging.”

“It is a term that was created by the CPP-NPA-NDF (Communist Party of the Philippines–New People’s Army-National Democratic Front) to demonize the efforts of the government in exposing the duplicity of the CPP-NPA-NDF… We are exposing the truth about certain organizations and individuals, ang usual reaction ay you will be vilified by the community because you are a ‘red-tagger.’ Nagkakaroon ng negative impression with what you are doing,” litaniya ni Torres.

Tinuran ni Torres na ang pagbisita ni Khan sa bansa ay isang testamento sa “commitment to transparency, open dialogue, and protection of civic space in our nation.”

“This visit offers an exceptional opportunity for the international community to gain a nuanced understanding of the policies that govern our nation. It is a chance for us to underscore our commitment to fostering a climate of openness and transparency,” pahayag ni Torres.

“In our interactions, UNSR Ms. Khan highlighted the need for a delicate balance in addressing challenges while considering broader implications for societal and individual interests,” ang dagdag na wika ng opisyal.

Giit pa ni Torres,  ang NTF-ELCAC ay “eagerly awaiting” sa obserbasyon at rekomendasyon ni Khan sa programa ng task force.

“I would like to believe all these things would be shared by the UN rapporteur during her press conference on February 2. In the meantime, she’s still reserving ang comments niya sa atin,” ayon kay Torres.

Samantala, sa panahon ni dating Pangulong Rodrigo Roa Duterte, inakusahan ang mga dating opisyal ng NTF-ELCAC ng red-tagging sa mga aktibista, journalist (mamamahayag) at mga kritiko ng gobyerno.

Ito ang dahilan kung bakit inirekomenda ni UN rapporteur Ian Fry, noong Nobyembre ng nakaraang taon ang abolisyon o paglusaw sa NTF-ELCAC, sinabi pa rin niya na ang NTF-ELCAC umano ay “operating with impunity.”

Winika ni Fry na kailangan ang isang “full at independent probe” para makita ang nakalipas na operasyon ng anti-communist task force. Kris Jose

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