MANILA, Philippines— Pro-democracy activists are protesting the declaration of a holiday marking the birthday of the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos as an attempt at “political rehabilitation” for his family.
More than 150 people rallied outside a national heroes’ cemetery Monday where the Marcos family celebrating his 100th birthday. He died in 1989.
With riot police standing by, the protesters burned composite portraits showing half of Marcos’ face on one side and President Rodrigo Duterte on the other. Pro-Marcos supporters yelled his name in a separate rally nearby.
Duterte has declared Marcos’ birthday a holiday in the late president’s northern home province. In November, he approved his burial in a secrecy-shrouded ceremony in Heroes’ Cemetery in Manila. The move shocked democracy and rights advocates and sparked widespread protests.