THE Philippine National Police leadership yesterday hailed the approval by the joint session of Congress of another extension of martial law in Mindanao until the end of 2019 citing a significant reduction in crime and ISIS-inspired terror activities since the Duterte government imposed martial rule in the region in May 2017.
“This is a good day for the people of Mindanao to be assured of another full year of peace and security against the imminent threat of violence from extremist and communist terrorist forces,” said PNP chief Director General Oscar D. Albayalde in a statement.
According to the PNP chief, “police operations against the New People’s Army, Abu Sayyaf, Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters and other radical extremist groups will continue without let-up in support of the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the local government units.”
“Rest assured, all PNP operations will be conducted under strict observance of Police Operations Procedures and with due regard and respect for human rights and the rule of law,” he added.
Mindanao police forces earlier recommended to Gen. Albayalde the extension of martial law in the region amid the positive impact on the economy and peace and order in Mindanao from May 2017 to date, with no human rights violations associated with the martial law declared under the former Ferdinand Marcos administration being recorded so far.
Officials likewise noted that since martial law was imposed in the region in June 2017, security forces and their checkpoints have effectively constricted the movement of the NPA, the Maute Group and the Abu Sayyaf Group in Mindanao.