THEY are killing farmers again.
Just a few days after the killing of four farmers in Fort Magsaysay, Laur, Nueva Ecija on September 3, peasant leader Ariel Diaz was gunned down last Thursday, September 7 in Villa Pereda, Delfin Albano, Isabela.
These incidents occurred at a time when the Government of the Republic of the Philippines and the National Democratic Front of the Philuippines peace talks resumed with renewed commitment and vigor. Topping the agenda are fundamental socio-economic reforms including genuine land reform directly affecting 75 million Filipinos out of the present population of about 100 million.
Farmers Elejo Barbado, Emerencia dela Rosa, Violeta Mercado and Gaudencio Bagalay were killed while asserting their right to till the land in Fort Magsaysay while Ariel Diaz is the chairperson of DAGAMI, the local chapter of the militant peasant organization Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP), and heads the Inter-municipal Peasant Alliance Against Foreign Landgrabbing in Northern Isabela.
The peasant killings remind us of the Mendiola Massacre which led to the collapse of peace negotiations in 1987.
Could the recent massacre in Fort Magsaysay, a reservation offered for US military use, and the extra-judicial killing in Isabela, site of massive contract-growing plantations, be spoilers to the current peace negotiations?
The United States and the local big landlord-compradors are hellbent to stop agrarian reform, national industrialization and independent foreign policy in the Philippines.
It has utilized state and para-military forces to quell the militant peasant movement, assassinate leaders and organizers, instill fear among the masses, and sabotage talks for peace.
These saboteurs and peace destroyers, however, are bound to fail miserably. The militant and anti-imperialist mass movements are growing in unity and strength throughout the country.
Now is the time to press for the people’s legitimate demands for sovereignty, democracy and social justice.
Carry forward the socio-economic reforms!
Pursue peace with justice!
Justice to the farmers, justice to the Filipino people!
INTERNATIONAL LEAGUE OF PEOPLES’ STRUGGLES-Philippines
7 September 2016