Philippines: Erosion


December 12, 2007: It is believed that the communist NPA rebels lost more than 1,300 people (to death, defection and arrest) this year, and now have only about 6,000 armed members. The NPA is suffering because it is now officially an international terrorist organization. This hurts fund raising, and has led to the prosecution of some of the exiled leadership.In response, the NPA has launched a media campaign accusing the government of using death squads to murder a thousand NPA members and supporters over the last seven years. By associating every death of a leftist to this government conspiracy, the NPA has gotten the UN to recognize and condemn the program, which the government denies exists. Meanwhile, the NPA is shrinking year by year, and faces extinction if the trend continues. The NPA has been operating since the 1960s.

December 9, 2007: Fourteen Islamic terrorists were sentenced to life in prison for a raid in early 2001, that led to the kidnapping of 20 people, and the later murder of five. Four of the accused were acquitted, after a three year trial, but three of them are held for trial on other terrorist acts. While 85 Abu Sayyaf members were identified as participating in the kidnapping and murder, only 24 have been captured so far. Four died in a prison riot. Police and soldiers continue to hunt down Abu Sayyaf members in the Moslem south.


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