Militants picket SC, call for rejection of EDCA

A riot police officer uses his shield to stop a protester during a rally against the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) in front of the U.S. embassy in Manila on Wednesday. The deal between the U.S. and Philippine governments would allow U.S. forces access to Philippine bases. (MNS photo)

A riot police officer uses his shield to stop a protester during a rally against the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) in front of the U.S. embassy in Manila on Wednesday. The deal between the U.S. and Philippine governments would allow U.S. forces access to Philippine bases. (MNS photo)

MANILA (Mabuhay) — About a hundred protesters staged a rally in front of the Supreme Court (SC) on Wednesday morning in time for the 24th anniversary of the Philippines’ rejection of the United States bases treaty.

The protesters are from militant organization Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (Bayan), led by former Bayan Muna Representative Teddy Casiño, one of the petitioners against the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) between the Philippines and the US.

The group said that in spite of the rejection of the RP-US Bases Treaty in 1991, there is “continuing US intervention” and a plan to “bring back US bases under the [EDCA].”

They called on the SC to speed up the resolution of the petitions against the EDCA, noting that it has been more than a year since the petitions assailing the constitutionality of the agreement were filed.

They also criticized government for the continuing presence of US forces in the Philippines, citing reports that an American soldier was among the fatalities in the bloody January 25 Mamasapano incident.

The group said “the US funded and directed the Mamasapano operation and sacrificed the lives of Filipinos in the name of the US war on terror.”

Forty-four PNP Special Action Force (SAF) commandos died in the bloody encounter with Moro rebels and private armed groups.

After their program at the SC, the protesters proceeded to the US Embassy in nearby Roxas Boulevard.(MNS)

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