Displaying items by tag: martial law

Be not afraid, Robredo urges public amid Marawi clashes

By: Nikko Dizon - Reporter / @NikkoDizonINQPhilippine Daily Inquirer

Vice President Leni Robredo on Tuesday night urged the public not to be afraid and to stand their ground as fighting went on in Marawi City, which came under siege from terrorist groups that have pledged allegiance to the Islamic State.

Robredo expressed full trust that the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) would be able to resolve the situation soon.

President Duterte is on a trip to Russia with high-ranking officials of government, including the military top brass led by AFP chief of staff General Eduardo Año.

But the President, after declaring a 60-day martial law in Mindanao Tuesday night, has decided to cut short his Russia trip so he can fly home to deal with the crisis in Marawi.

AFP Vice Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Salvador Mison, Jr. and The Deputy Chief of Staff Vice Admiral Narciso Vingson, Jr. are in Manila.

In a statement in Filipino, Robredo said the AFP leadership “has given an assurance that they have the situation under control and that they could resolve it in the soonest possible time.”

Robredo called on the people to “pray for the soldiers who are fighting on behalf of our countrymen in Marawi.”

“Let us also pray for our fellow Filipinos who are caught in the middle of this firefight,” she said.

Robredo said that certainly, residents of Marawi would need immediate assistance.

The Vice President said she has directed her office to prepare for relief operations for the families affected by the incident.

“We are calling on all sectors with the capacity to help to provide whatever assistance they could the soonest possible time,” she said.

“Let us not be afraid. Let us stand our ground. And let us trust that peace will prevail,” the Vice President said.

Her statement in full:

“Together with the Filipino people, we have been monitoring the events that transpired in the City of Marawi. We are confident that the Armed Forces will soon resolve the situation.

“We have been in contact with the leadership of the AFP, and they have assured us that they are in control and that the conflict will be suppressed at the soonest possible time.

“We urge everyone to pray for our men and women who are protecting the people of Marawi. We also pray for our fellow Filipinos caught in the cross fire.

“We expect that this incident will soon end. In the wake of this conflict, help and support will be urgently needed for those affected. I have instructed my office to begin relief operations for those in need. We call on all sectors of society, who can extend assistance, to respond as soon as possible.

“Let us not be afraid. Let us be steadfast. Let us be assured that peace will prevail.”


Lawmakers told to stay in Manila for martial law review

Philippine Congress. FILE PHOTO

Majority Leader Rudy Fariñas on Wednesday urged members of the House of Representatives to stay in Manila in case Congress convenes to discuss President Rodrigo Duterte’s declaration of martial law in Mindanao.

In a text message to House members, Fariñas said the chamber would hold sessions until Friday, thus representatives were advised to stay in Manila until then.

Fariñas said that under the 1987 Constitution, the President was required to report to Congress within 48 hours regarding the declaration of martial law. Congress would then approve or revoke declaration in a majority vote of its members.

“All Members are advised to stay put in Manila. Under our Rules, our sessions are until Friday. The President will head back home ASAP (the party is now at the Moscow airport) and we may have session as soon as we receive his official report,” Fariñas said.

The Ilocos Norte representative said he and Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez would be briefed by the military and police about the martial law declaration, while the lower House would wait for the President’s report to Congress.

He also urged the public to keep safe and not panic amid a martial law declaration in the South.

“We will have to wait for the report of the President in order for us to exercise our constitutional duty on the matter. In the meantime, we ask our people to remain calm and to keep safe,” Alvarez said.

While on official visit to Russia, President Duterte declared martial law after the Maute group engaged government troops in a firefight in Marawi city.

Lorenzana: Maute burns several facilities in Marawi, entire city pitch black

Due to lessons learned from the martial law regime of the dictator Ferdinand Marcos marred with human rights violations, torture, and enforced disappearances, the 1987 Constitution provided checks and balances by allowing Congress and the Supreme Court to step in on the martial law declaration.

According to the Constitution, the president as commander-in-chief of all armed forces may declare martial law or suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus to “prevent or suppress lawless violence, invasion or rebellion ” for 60 days subject to approval of Congress.

“In case of invasion or rebellion, when the public safety requires it, he may, for a period not exceeding sixty days, suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus or place the Philippines or any part thereof under martial law,” the Constitution stated.

“Within forty-eight hours from the proclamation of martial law or the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus, the President shall submit a report in person or in writing to the Congress. The Congress, voting jointly, by a vote of at least a majority of all its Members in regular or special session, may revoke such proclamation or suspension, which revocation shall not be set aside by the President,” it added..

Congress may also extend the proclamation or suspension of martial law upon the initiative of the President “if the invasion or rebellion shall persist and public safety requires it,” the Constitution stated.

The Supreme Court may also review the need for a declaration of martial law or suspension of the privilege of writ of habeas corpus upon an appropriate proceeding filed by a concerned citizen.

The Constitution states that a state of martial law “does not suspend the operation of the Constitution, nor supplant the functioning of the civil courts or legislative assemblies, nor authorize the conferment of jurisdiction on military courts and agencies over civilians where civil courts are able to function, nor automatically suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus.”

Before his plane took off bound for Manila from Russia, Duterte said his martial law would not be any different than that of the dictator Marcos. He has always raised the specter of martial law to solve the country’s ills, including the drug menace.

“Martial law is martial law. So kayong mga kababayan ko, you’ve experienced martial law, it would not be any different from what the President Marcos did. I’d be harsh,” Mr. Duterte said in a Facebook live interview with Assistant Secretary Mocha Uson of the Presidential Communications Operations Office. CBB



Duterte says his martial law to be similar to Marcos time

MOSCOW, Russia – The martial law in Mindanao which President Rodrigo Duterte just declared will be no different from martial law during the time of Ferdinand Marcos, the President himself said before flying back to the Philippines.

"Martial law is martial law ha. It will not be any different from what the President, Marcos did. I'd be harsh," said Duterte early morning Wednesday, May 24, according to the Facebook Live video of Presidential Communications Assistant Secretary Mocha Uson.

He was speaking on board the presidential plane right before it took off for Manila.

"I was asked how I would deal with terrorism. I said I'd be harsh. I told everyone, 'do not force my hand into it,'" he added.

He did not elaborate on this in the short video but did mention the likely timeframe of his martial law declaration.

"How long? Well, if it would take a year to do it then we'll do it. If it's over in a month I'd be happy," he said. 

The Constitution says it should not initially exceed 60 days; any extension has to be approved by Congress.

Presidential Spokesman Ernesto Abella himself earlier said it would last 60 days. (READ: Martial law 101)

Section 18, Article VII of the 1987 Philippine Constitution says that the President, as commander-in-chief, may “in case of invasion or rebellion, when the public safety requires it” suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus or place the country under martial law. The writ safeguards individual freedom against arbitrary state action.

Constitutional limits

Crafted after the EDSA People Power revolution that ousted Marcos in 1986, the 1987 Constitution highlights the role of other branches of government in the martial law declaration. The provisions are meant precisely to prevent grave abuse and stop another Marcos from tinkering with civil rights.

Thus within 48 hours after its declaration, the President shall submit a report “in person or in writing” to Congress. The declaration can also be revoked by via a vote by Congress, now controlled by Duterte allies.

The Supreme Court may review the basis of its declaration.

Dark period

Duterte is the 3rd Philippine president to declare martial law since 1972, when Marcos declared one – a dark chapter in Philippine history that was marked by abuse, violence and corruption.

On December 5, 2009, then president Gloria Macapagal Arroyo declared martial law in Maguindanao, also in the southern Philippines, through Proclamation 1959, following the massacre of 58 people – mostly members of the media – in the town of Ampatuan.

But it was short. Arroyo lifted it 7 days later on December 12, 2009 upon the recommendation of the Cabinet. 

Duterte declared martial law Tuesday night after the Maute terrorist group seized the Islamic city of Marawi.

But he's been warning about it. On May 19, he said in a speech, "If I declare martial law in Mindanao, I will solve all the ills of Mindanao."

The military has been running a two-front anti terror campaign in Mindanao – the one against the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) based in Western Mindanao in the islands of Sulu and Basilan, and another against the Maute and its Abu Sayyaf allies in the Lanao provinces in Northern Mindanao.

Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said Tuesday that the military operation in Marawi targeted ASG leader Isinilon Hapilon, who was believed to have been spotted in the area.

In an earlier press conference in Moscow, Lorenzana said that all the usual trappings of martial law would come with Duterte's recent declaration.

"All that should be done under martial law, we will implement – control of movement, searches and arrest of detained people, suspension of writ of habeas corpus," he said.

The President departed from Moscow at around 1:30 am Moscow time. He is scheduled to arrive in Manila at 4:30 pm, Manila time.

As of writing, Malacañang has not yet issued the document bearing Duterte's martial law declaration. – Rappler.com

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