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Kumalas na? Leftist leaders organize movement vs. Duterte’s ‘tyranny’

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Have the Reds called it quits with President Rodrigo Duterte?

Some prominent members of the leftist movement have joined forces with human rights advocates and other civil society leaders to launch a movement against “the increasing fascism and militarist rule of the Duterte government.”

During its launch Monday (August 28) in Quezon City, the Movement Against Tyranny (MAT) issued a manifesto titled “Stop the Killings, Stand Against Tyranny” where they accused Duterte of allowing the police and death squads to kill thousands of poor drug suspects “in a brutal and murderous war on drugs.”

It called on the public to take a stand and speak out against the extrajudicial killings and “other blatant acts of tyranny” since Duterte’s rule is “fast unfolding into another despotic regime.”

Leading the group was former Senator Rene Saguisag and Sister Mary John Mananzan. Joining them were leftist leaders such as ACT Teachers Rep. Antonio Tino, former Bayan Muna party-list Rep. Neri Colmenares, National Union of People’s Lawyers Secretary General Edre Olalia, Karapatan’s Cristina Palabay and BAYAN’s Dr. Carol Araullo.

The relationship between the communist movement and Duterte has become fragile since the President shelved the peace talks. He has accused the New People’s Army of sabotaging the negotiations by continuing its attacks against government forces.

In addition to slamming the drug war, MAT also criticized the President for allegedly ordering the military and policce to “bombard civilian communities and terrorize, kill and illegally arrest those he considers as ‘enemies of the state.'”

The group also hit Duterte for “pressuring into submission” the Supreme Court, Ombudsman and Commission on Human Rights, as well as the media.

MAT urged the public to gather at Luneta on September 21, the 45th anniversary of the declaration of martial law by dictator Ferdinand Marcos to show solidarity to human rights victims and send the message about not letting tyranny reign.