Revolutionary Worker #1176, November 24, 2002, posted at http://rwor.org
In a new and dangerous attack on revolutionary Filipino exiles, the Council of the European Union (EU) placed Jose Maria Sison on its list of "foreign terrorist persons, groups and entities" on October 28. Sison is the founding chairman of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) and chief political consultant of the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP). He is currently a political refugee living in the Netherlands. The EU also placed the New People's Army (NPA), led by the Communist Party of the Philippines, on its "terrorist" list.
This move by the EU is the latest in a recent series of outrageous attacks on Sison and the Philippine revolutionary movement by the U.S. and European imperialists and the reactionary Philippine government.
On August 9 of this year, the U.S. State Department announced that it had placed the CPP and NPA on the official U.S. list of "foreign terrorist organizations." This made it illegal for anyone in the U.S. to "provide material support or resources" to these groups; required U.S. financial institutions to block any assets held by them; and prohibited representatives or members of those groups from entering the U.S. or made them subject to deportation from the U.S. Several days later, the U.S. Treasury Department listed the CPP, NPA, and Jose Maria Sison among the organizations and individuals that are targets for the freezing of assets by financial institutions.
The Dutch government quickly followed and announced that in response to U.S. requests, it had frozen the assets of the CPP and exiles associated with the Philippine revolutionary movement. Dutch officials said that they had asked other EU countries to do the same. In a cold-blooded step, the Dutch government cut off the small allowance that Sison had received for basic necessities, health insurance and housing.
Sison was a political prisoner for eight years under the U.S.-backed Marcos dictatorship. He has lived as a political refugee in the Netherlands since 1988 and has waged legal battles in the Dutch courts against attempts to deport him. Now, the U.S.--working with its European allies and the Philippine puppet regime--is stepping up the deadly threats against Sison and other revolutionary Filipinos living abroad. These attacks are taking place at a time when the U.S. is stepping up military intervention in the Philippines in a major way, as part of its worldwide power grab under the banner of "war on terrorism."
Supporters are mobilizing in Europe and the U.S. to defend Jose Maria Sison against these unjust attacks. Further information and updates on this struggle are available online at www.defendsison.be and www.inps-sison.freewebspace.com.
The following is a statement issued by Jose Maria Sison, dated November 1, 2002.
Prof. Jose Maria Sison
1 November 2002
The European Council has unjustly put my name on the list of so-called terrorists in accordance with the request earlier made by the Dutch government upon the prompting of the U.S. government. My democratic rights are viciously violated. I am criminalized as a "terrorist" without due process. I am defamed and demonized. My life is being threatened. I suffer moral and material damages.
It is completely absurd that I am misrepresented as "terrorist" for being supposedly "linked to" or "in charge of" the New People's Army (NPA). In fact, I am simply an unemployed teacher, prevented by the Dutch government from working for more than 14 years already and serving as the chief political consultant of the National Democratic Front (NDFP) in its peace negotiations with the Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP).
It is wrong to make me appear as if I were more powerful than such organs of leadership as the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP), the national military staff of the NPA and the National Council of the NDFP, which are all in the Philippines.
The European Council has also unjustly labeled the New People's Army as "terrorist". In fact, it is a disciplined revolutionary army led by the CPP. It is the instrument of the Filipino people in fighting for national liberation and democracy.
It is bound by the Bill of Fundamental Rights in the Guide for Establishing the People's Government, the Rules of the New People's Army, the NDFP Declaration of Undertaking to Apply the Ge- neva Conventions and Protocol I and the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect of Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law.
The listing of the NPA and my name as "terrorists" by the European Council has the effect of scuttling the peace negotiations between the GRP and the NDFP. Consequent to the listing, it is no longer advisable to hold these negotiations in Europe where organizations and individuals belonging to or associated with the NDFP in one way or another are vulnerable to being condemned and treated as "terrorists".
The NDFP cannot allow the members of its negotiating panel, its consultants, staffers and supporters in Europe to be put under duress. It rightfully condemns the scheme of the U.S. and the Macapagal-Arroyo puppet regime to push the revolutionary forces towards capitulation by demonizing them as "terrorists" and threatening them with the brutal power of the U.S. and other imperialists.
The campaign to demonize the revolutionary forces can only unite the people to wage a fiercer armed revolution against the armed counterrevolution. They were not at all cowed by the U.S.-directed Marcos fascist dictatorship and the existence of the U.S. military bases at the peak of the Cold War. There is no reason for them whatsoever to be frightened by U.S. imperialism and a puppet regime that are in the throes of the worst economic and social crisis since the end of World War 2.
The U.S. and the Macapagal-Arroyo regime have pushed the European governments to scuttle the peace negotiations and to persecute me. I am now in a situation of using much of my time to wage legal battles in court and to generate moral and political support for my just cause.
I also have to guard against foul play by the agents of U.S. imperialism who are now thrilled by the Bush propensity for aggressive war and by his lifting of the ban on assassination of leaders opposed to U.S. imperialism. The listing of my name as "terrorist" by the European Council is calculated to create the political climate for facilitating my extradition and even my assassination.
The U.S. and the Macapagal-Arroyo regime are hell-bent on destroying the people's revolutionary movement by sheer military force under the pretext of carrying out a war on terrorism. The people and the revolutionary forces have no choice but to defend themselves and defeat their oppressors and exploiters in order to bring about national liberation and democracy.
This article is posted in English and Spanish on Revolutionary Worker Online
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