Activist groups held rally in UP Diliman to denounce Anti-Terrorism Act

Photo shared by Bayan Renato Reyes via Twitter

After President Rodrigo Duterte signed the controversial anti-terrorism bill into law, activists have staged a demonstration on Saturday in UP Diliman , Quezon City to denounce the Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020.

Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (Bayan) Secretary-General Renato Reyes has shared a photo on Twitter showing the mask-wearing protesters.

“Mga kababayan, hindi po lingid sa ating kaalaman na itong terror law ang pinakahuling piyesa ni Duterte sa kanyang malawak na pasismo laban sa sambayanang Pilipino,” Gabriela Youth national spokesperson Clarice Palce said during the rally.

Palce also said that President Duterte should have prioritized the mass testing for COVID-19 in the country.

“Normal pong matakot, normal pong kabahan, pero mas kailangan ng Pilipino sa ngayon ay tumindig at makiisa,” Palce said

Despite opposition of many, President Duterte signed the controversial bill into law on Friday, July 3. 

In a statement, Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque said the enactment of the measure, now known as the Republic Act No. 11479 or the Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020, shows the Duterte administration’s commitment to eradicate terrorism.

“Terrorism, as we often said, strikes anytime and anywhere. It is a crime against the people and humanity; thus, the fight against terrorism requires a comprehensive approach to contain terrorist threats,” Roque said.

“The signing of the aforesaid law demonstrates our serious commitment to stamp out terrorism, which has long plagued the country and has caused unimaginable grief and horror to many of our people.”

The new law seeks to strengthen the Human Security Act of 2007 and criminalizes incitement of terrorism and address the continuing threat of terror groups in the country such as the Abu Sayyaf as the main reason for the need of the said law.

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