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Terrorism is the massacre of eight Lumad in South Cotabato - SANDUGO

Press Release
December 5, 2017

QUEZON CITY – “The real terrorist is the one who sows terror in our communities, he who orders to massacre Lumad, threatens to bomb Lumad schools, orders to kill anyone who try to criticize him. For the national minorities, Pres. Duterte is the terrorist,” Datu Jerome Succor Aba, co-chairperson of Sandugo said today at a press conference. During the press conference, the massacre of eight Tboli and Dulangan Manobo was announced to the public.

“This is by far the worst attack against the indigenous peoples,” The incident happened last December 3, when, according to Karapatan-Socskasargen, 27th and 33rd Infantry Battalion shot and killed T’boli and Dulangan Manobo farmers at about 1pm in Sitio Datalbong, Brgy. Ned, Lake Sebu South Cotabato.

“The residents were about to harvest their crops in their farms that day. They have just claimed back their land from David M. Consunji Inc. (DMCI) who displaced the T’boli and Dulangan Manabo from their ancestral lands to plant coffee for Nestle. Around 300 hectares have already been replaced with corn and other sustenance food planted by the rightful owners – Lumad communities,” Aba explained.

“DMCI attempted to again take the land but the Lumad residents resisted. The Philippine Army, a day before the massacre, told the media in Socsksargen that the Lumad should now surrender especially a certain commander Victor,” Aba said. “Come December 3, Datu Victor Danyan, not a member of New People’s Army but a community leader, was among those massacred by the soldiers,” Aba continued.

Datu Victor’s son, Victor Danyan Jr, was also killed along with Artemio Danyan, Pato Celardo, Samuel Angkoy, To Diamante, Bobot Lagase and Matend Bantal. Two others were wounded.

This came after Pres. Rodrigo Duterte announced the Pres. Proclamation 360, terminating the peacetalks with the National Democratic Front of the Philippines. “This was also after this tyrant President made pronouncements of targeting the NPAs next. The AFP took this as a cue to intensify counter-insurgency operations against civilians,” Aba said.

“With the thousands of unaccounted lives during the fighting in Marawi, the hundreds of thousands of both Moro and indigenous peoples displaced from their communities, all because of Duterte’s policy to wipe out his ‘enemies,’ this US puppet president has to be made accountable,” Aba said.

“Just recently, 2,162 Lumad of Lianga and San Agustin of Surigao del Sur forcedly evacuated due to threats of bombing with the hovering of drones and a helicopter with missiles believed to be from the 75th IB of the AFP. The soldiers have imposed a food blockade to the evacuees, accusing it will be fed to the NPAs,” Aba said.

“Tyrants and terrorists are one and the same. They sow terror to the common people because they are nothing but sell-outs to the big private corporations. They will try to hold on to their power by sowing more terror,” Aba said. “We all know what happened to tyrants like Marcos, Pinochet – they were overthrown,” Aba ended.