MANILA — The Department of Justice (DOJ) is carefully studying the formal petition they plan to file this week before the regional trial court officially declaring as terrorist groups the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) and its armed wing, the New People’s Army (NPA).
Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II issued Department Order no. 779 directing the Office of Prosecutor General to file the necessary application or petition with the appropriate court for the proscription or declaration of the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army as a terrorist organization pursuant to Republic Act (RA) 9372 also known as “Human Security Act of 2007.”
It has been almost a month since President Rodrigo Duterte declared the CPP-NPA as terrorists but Aguirre explained that they have to prepare the petition very carefully.
He noted that as part of the preparations, prosecutors have to seek the help of the intelligence community.
“Our DOJ prosecutors led by the head of task force, Prosecutor Peter Ong, has been meeting with the intelligence people katulad ng (like) NICA (National Intelligence Coordinating Agency), ISAFP (Intelligence Service of the Armed Forces of the Philippines) and other intelligence agencies of the government,” he said.
Aguirre is optimistic that the lower court would grant the government’s request following President Rodrigo Duterte’s proclamation naming the CPP and NPA as terror organizations.
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque earlier announced that the President has signed a proclamation formally designating the CPP-NPA as a terrorist organization.
The Palace spokesperson said the President signed the proclamation pursuant to the provisions of Republic Act No. 10168 or the Human Security Act.
Roque said under the law, affiliate revolutionary groups of the CPP-NPA would also be considered terrorist groups, and anyone proven to be financing them would be held liable.
Citing the pertinent provisions of RA 10168, Roque said a designated person is “any person or entity designated or identified as a terrorist, as one who finances terrorism or a terrorist organization or group under the applicable United Nations Security Council resolution or by another jurisdiction or supranational jurisdiction and pursuant to the proclamation which implements the Human Security Act.”
“Take note that the domestic statute and the UN Security Council prohibit the giving of funds to terrorist organizations. This will enable law enforcement agencies to run after individuals who will, in any way, provide financial support to the NPA now that it has been described as a terrorist organization,” Roque said.
In his proclamation, Duterte directed the Department of Foreign Affairs “to publish the foregoing designation of CPP-NPA and other designated persons, organizations, in accordance with Sections 3 and 15 of RA 10168 and its implementing rules and regulations.”
The proclamation was issued after the Philippine government terminated peace talks with the CPP-NPA after a series of violent attacks which the President described as against the humanitarian law.