A command of the New People’s Army has criticized the cancellation of the fifth round of peace talks in the Netherlands by the Government of the Republic of the Philippines, saying it was blatantly one-sided, unjustified and flimsy.
In a statement, Jaime “Ka Diego” Padilla, spokesperson for the NPA Southern Tagalog’s Melito Glor Command, said the cancellation was based on illogical grounds centering on the NPA’s escalating armed offensives while omitting the fact that since the breakdown of the reciprocal interim ceasefire agreement between the GRP and the NDFP last February, the Duterte government has given the marching order to launch full-scale offensives against the revolutionary forces.
“This left the NPA with no option but to defend the people and its own forces by launching counter tactical offensive in self-defense…In this regard, upon the announcement of the Communist Party of the Philippines that it will issue a ceasefire order prior to the opening of the peace talks, the NPA suspended its tactical offensives to show respect and goodwill. However, the GRP didn’t reciprocate and proceeded with its all-out war that has caused casualties on the side of the NPA,” he explained.
Padilla said that in Southern Tagalog, the NPA has sustained casualties in numerous defensive actions as a result of standing-down their offensive preparations while the Armed Forces of the Philippines is unrelenting in launching offensive military operations since Duterte’s all-out war declaration last February.