MANILA, Philippines — “Why should I be scared of you?”
President Rodrigo Duterte mocked the communist rebels on Tuesday as he reiterated his earlier statement that the peace talks are over.
“Tapos na tayo mag-usap. Ngayon, gusto ninyo patayan na lang. I am not ready to talk to any communist guy. Tapos na ‘yan,” Duterte said in a speech at the Camp Teodulfo Bautista in Jolo, Sulu where he spent the Day of Valor.
(We are done with the talks. Now we can just kill each other. I am not ready to talk to any communist guy. It’s finished.)
“Sabi ko, karami kong sundalo, karami kong eroplano, karami kong matatapang na sundalo. Bakit ako matakot sa inyo (I have soldiers, planes. Why should I be scared of you)?” he added.
The President again taunted the communist rebels whom he said could not even control a barangay (village).
“Why should I? You cannot even hang on to a barangay for 24 hours — hit-and-run lang kayo. Why should I be scared of you?” he said.
In November 2017, Duterte signed Proclamation No. 360, formally terminating the peace talks with the communist rebels.
READ: Duterte signs Proclamation No. 360 terminating peace talks with NPA
He has issued flip-flopping statements on whether he was willing or not willing to resume talks with the rebels.
But during the Philippine Army’s 122nd Founding Anniversary rites on March 21, Duterte announced the “permanent termination of our talks between the Government panel and the Communist Party of the Philippines.”
This came after he terminated the appointment of government peace negotiators. /ee
READ: Duterte cancels appointment of Bello, 4 others as gov’t peace negotiators
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