14 September 2009
Reference: Joms Salvador, Spokesperson, 371-2302 / 0918-9182150
GI Joe, It's Time To Go - GABRIELA
Bearing placards saying “G.I. Joe, it's time to go!”, members of the
militant women's group GABRIELA staged a protest action this morning in
front of the US Embassy against the Visiting Forces Agreement. Protests
against the VFA is heightening as the 18th anniversary of the termination
of the US-RP Military Bases on September 16 nears.
“We do not need US troops in the Philippines. We have kicked them out 18
years ago and they remain unwelcome,” said Joms Salvador, GABRIELA
spokesperson. Salvador said that the social cost of US military presence
in the country, particularly the exploitation and abuse of women, is
enough reason for the abrogation of the agreement.
The protesters carried brooms, fly-swatters and laundry paddles to signify
their demand to drive away US soldiers from the country whose presence,
the group claims, spurs further exploitation of women.
“In the course of the ten years of the VFA, the sex trade industry
flourished within the periphery of areas wherever the US troops are
stationed. For the rest and recreation needs of these foreign troops,
women were being brought inside their camps,” said Salvador.
In a Senate hearing last August 27, former Philippine Navy lieutenant
Nancy Gadian revealed that women were being brought inside Camp Navarro
even during daytime.
GABRIELA challenges Noynoy: Work to abrogate the VFA
GABRIELA also issued a challenge to Sen. Noynoy Aquino, who recently
announced his intention to run for president in the 2010 elections.
“The Military Bases Agreement was terminated in 1991 during the term of
her mother, the late Pres. Corazon Aquino. If Sen. Aquino desires to be
like her mother and take the helm of our country’s leadership, he should
by now show that he really stands with the people. He should show his
courage, make a clear stand against the VFA, and do everything within his
current capacity as a senator to ensure that the VFA is terminated,”
“In the last ten years, US soldiers have committed several violations
including the rape of two Filipino women. We will not wait for more Nicole
and Vanessa to be ravished by US soldiers. We want them out now,” said
“For the sake of Filipino women and children, for the sake of our nation,
we will not rest until we end US military intervention in the
Public Information Department
GABRIELA National Office
Wage all-out struggle against US forces in Mindanao--Ka OrisSeptember
The National Democratic Front-Mindanao (NDF-Mindanao) today issued a call
urging all revolutionary forces in Mindanao "to wage an all-out struggle
against the deployment and intervention of American soldiers in the
internal armed conflict in the Philippines."
NDF-Mindanao spokesperson Jorge Madlos ("Ka Oris") issued the call in
response to the statement by US Defense Secretary Robert Gates that the US
will continue to involve itself in the "counter-insurgency" war in the
Philippines which would include heightened support for the Armed Forces of
The US position was echoed by Philippine Defense Secretary Gilbert Teodoro
who arrived from a five-day visit to the US after meeting Gates and CIA
Director Leon Panetta aimed at bringing "to a high gear" the defense and
security cooperation between the US and Philippines.
"US imperialism has become ever more arrogant and overbearing in asserting
its imperial power over the Philippines," said Madlos. "It is trampling on
Philippine sovereignty with utter impunity emboldened by the outright
puppetry and servility of the Arroyo government."
The US military has established its permanent presence in the country
through the auspices of the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA). Under the VFA,
it has succeeded in permanently stationing the 600-force Joint Special
Operations Task Force-Philippines (JSOTF-P) in several areas in Mindanao.
Additionally, several thousand US soldiers have been allowed to enter the
Philippines purportedly to participate in the annual Balikatan joint
US military forces have been increasingly involved in counter-guerrilla
operations. Its troops are engaged in electronic and sattelite surveilance
as well as provide battlefield logistical support. Teams of US soldiers
have been seen embedded in AFP units in combat field operations as well as
in tactical command posts (TCPs).
"The patriotic people of Mindanao do not welcome the permanent presence
and intervention of US troops in Mindanao and elsewhere in the
Philippines," added Madlos. "They are not deceived by the so-called
humanitarian operations being conducted by the US that aim to camouflage
their military interventionism."
"The NDF-Mindanao calls on the people and all revolutionary forces in
Mindanao to intensify their struggles against the interventionist troops
of the US. Unite with the rest of the Filipino people in demanding an end
to the permanent presence of US troops," added Madlos.
Madlos warned US soldiers against encroaching in guerrilla fronts where
"there is a great possibility of armed encounters with the New People's