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Filipino Communists extend ceasefire in areas devastated by Typhoon

By Communist Party of the Philippines

Fight Back News Service is circulating the following Nov. 23 statement from the Communist Party of the Philippines Extension of ceasefire in Yolanda – devastated areas

The Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Philippines hereby announces a one-month extension of the earlier ceasefire declaration issued to commands of the New People’s Army (NPA) and units of the people’s militias operating in the areas devastated by the 8 November super typhoon Yolanda (international name Haiyan). The ceasefire declaration, which practically commenced on 8 November 2013, and was originally set to expire on 2359 hours of 24 November, will now remain in effect up to 2359 hours of 24 December.

This ceasefire declaration covers the following regional commands of the NPA:

Eastern Visayas Regional Command Panay Regional Command Central Visayas Regional Command Negros Island Command

The ceasefire declaration is being extended by another month in view of the extent and gravity of the devastation of the super typhoon that has been made worse by the gross negligence and inutility of the ruling Aquino regime. This will allow all committees of the people’s democratic government, respective commands of the NPA and units of the people’s militias in the devastated areas to continue with rehabilitation efforts.

Revolutionary forces in the area are currently busy in facilitating the distribution of relief supply from various people’s organizations and media outfits. They are engaged in the reconstruction of homes, as well as in the mobilization of people in efforts to resume production and wage mass struggles. Disaster victims are being organized in order to assert their demand for reforms to address their urgent needs. The demand of the peasant masses for land reform and of the fisherfolk for fisheries reform have become particularly urgent in the devastated areas.

Revolutionary forces in Luzon and Mindanao have carried out efforts to generate funds and supplies for the victims of the recent disaster. They are in close coordination with media and people’s organizations which are busy extending assistance to the devastated areas.

Respective units of the NPA and the people’s militias shall remain in active defense mode within the period of effectivity of this declaration. They shall exert all-out effort to assist the masses but will exercise great caution to remain invisible to the enemy and avoid vulnerabilities. They should maintain a heightened sense of alertness against the hostile acts and encroachments of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) in areas within the scope of authority of the people’s democratic government.

This is in view of the fact that despite the widespread sufferings and hardships brought about by the recent disaster, the Aquino regime and the AFP have refused to relent in their offensive military operations and campaigns of suppression being carried out under the Oplan Bayanihan war against the people. The AFP has deployed several specialized units for transportation into Eastern Visayas. This is, however, a token effort considering the fact that it has 10,000 soldiers under the command of the 8th Infantry Division which remain focused on carrying out “counterinsurgency” operations within the region and continue to be on an offensive rampage. The Aquino regime has virtually garrisoned Tacloban City and placed it under military rule.

In Panay and Negros, the 3rd Infantry Division adamantly carries out offensive military operations in complete disregard for the recent devastation. As a result of the relentless offensive operations of the forces of the 3rd ID, two successive armed encounters erupted between a local NPA unit carrying out rehabilitation efforts and a platoon of the 47th IB on offensive operations in Barangay Magbalyo, Kabankalan City last 16 November, resulting in the wounding of an AFP soldier.

While maintaining a high degree of alertness against the offensive operations of the AFP, the NPA and the organized peasant masses must heighten efforts to wage revolutionary mass struggles to advance the democratic cause of the people in the face of the disaster and grave economic hardships.

The CPP leadership rejects the Malacañang proposal for a nationwide ceasefire of indefinite duration. The CPP ceasefire declaration is localized and has a definite period of effectivity with the aim of addressing the urgent need of extending emergency services to the people and carrying out rehabilitation efforts.

A ceasefire of longer duration and nationwide scope can be carried out only on the basis of fundamental socio-economic and political reforms. Otherwise, such a ceasefire will be of no benefit to the people and will only be taken advantage of by the most reactionary and fascist elements to push for the pacification and surrender of the people’s revolutionary forces.

If Malacañang is really serious in its proposal, then it should immediately end its unilateral suspension of peace negotiations and resume talks with the duly authorized panel of the National Democratic Front of the Philippines and forge agreements on the basis, parameters and mechanics of such a ceasefire.

Ceasefire declaration to concentrate on rehabilitation work in Yolanda devastated areas

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