The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) and its armed wing, the New People’s Army (NPA) have been declared terrorist organizations in a proclamation signed by President Rodrigo Duterte, according to The Manila Times Online on Wednesday(Dec 6).
Palace spokesman Harry Roque told the media at a news briefing on Tuesday that Duterte made the proclamation in accordance with the Republic Act 10168 or the Human Security Act due to the continued violent acts by the CPP-NPA.
However, he explained that the proclamation did not automatically make the CPP-NPA terrorist organizations, but the Department of Justice must file a petition with the Manila Regional Trial Court to classify them as terrorist groups under the Human Security Act.
“To take note, this is not just in relation to Philippine domestic law but also in relation to a UN Security resolution intended to curtail financing of terrorist organizations,” said Roque.
The terrorist tag will however not be applied to the National Democratic Front, the political wing of the CPP.
Earlier, President Duterte ordered NDF consultants who were given conditional freedom to participate in peace talks to surrender or face punitive actions.
Roque said he had no idea what will happen to CPP founding chairman Jose Maria “Joma” Sison who is in exile in The Netherlands.
The CPP and the NPA have been in the US list of foreign terrorist organizations since August 9, 2002 after the Arroyo administration requested the rebel group’s inclusion on the list.