Renato Reyes: Death squads are illegal, should not be tolerated

Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (Bayan) secretary general Renato Reyes has slammed the plan of President Rodrigo Duterte of establishing a death squad against NPA assassins.

“He wants to do to revolutionaries and activists what he did to alleged drug addicts. He is inciting a killing spree against government critics, human right defenders and just about everyone else tagged by the government as ‘Red,'” Reyes said in a statement.

He said that death squads are illegal and should not be tolerated. He added that waging an all-out war against communist rebels would not address the root causes of the armed conflict in the country.

“The peace talks have a better chance of achieving that, especially if the reforms are serious. With all-out war, Duterte will only transform the country into killing fields,” he added.

President Duterte, on November 27, said “one of these days, I’ll be forced also to create my own sparrow.”

“I’m trying to make peace with them [communists], ayaw nila. Tapos pinagpapatay ‘yung mga pulis pati sundalo ko,” he said. “Ah ‘di – ngayon ang kulang talaga is ang sparrow ko rin. Iyan lang man – diyan lang man sila makalamang. Sa bukid (bundok), fight man ‘yan. So mag-create ako ng sparrow. Duterte Death Squad against the sparrow.”

Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said the plan of President Duterte will be studied carefully. “We will study it very closely. Who will compose it, who will supervise it, who will be the targets? Who will be accountable? Because there is great danger of abuse or mistakes in these undercover operations,” he said.