President Rodrigo Duterte has signed a proclamation categorizing as a terrorist group, the Communist Party of the Philippines as well as its armed wing, the New People's Army.
The National Democratic Front, however, was not mentioned in the proclamation.
"It's a proclamation declaring the Communist Party of the Philippines, New People's Army as a designated, identified terrorist organization under R.A. No. 10168," Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque told reporters in Malacañang on Tuesday.
"So as the President has stated before, he has finally classified the CPP-NPA as a terrorist organization within the purview of the Human Security Act," he added.
Republic Act No. 10168 is the Terrorism Financing Prevention and Suppression Act of 2012.
“It is the policy of the state to protect life, liberty, and property from acts of terrorism, and condemn terrorism and those who support and finance it and to recognize as inimical and dangerous to the national security and the welfare of the people to make financing of terrorism a crime against the Filipino people, against humanity and against the law of nations,” said Roque, reading R.A. 10168.
“Whereas, RA No. 10168 criminalizes the financing of terrorism and dealing with property and funds of designated persons and organizations and prevents and suppresses the commission of said offenses through freezing and forfeiture of the properties and funds of the said designated persons and organizations.”
Roque also pointed out that under the Human Security Act, any person or entity is designated or identified as a terrorist if the person or entity finances terrorism or terrorist organization or group under the applicable United Nations Security Council Resolution or by another jurisdiction or supranational jurisdiction.
But the process would still have to go through the courts.
"The [Department of Justice] is hereby directed to immediately file the necessary application for the prescription or the declaration of the CPP-NPA as a terrorist organization with the appropriate Regional Trial Court," he said.
"So because of the proclamation, the (Justice) Secretary was directed by the Executive Secretary to file a petition in the RTC because it is not automatic that just because the executive has classified the group as a terrorist organization it will be considered as a terrorist organization under the domestic law and under relevant security council resolutions," he added.
Meanwhile, Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Jesus Dureza suggested, "Let's await its (petition for proscription) outcome." — MDM, GMA News