Press Release
August 15, 2006


Senate Minority Leader Aquilino Nene Q. Pimentel, Jr. (PDP-Laban) today debunked the criticisms of Malacañang and its congressional allies that partisan politics is behind the oppositions resistance to the passage of the Anti-Terrorism Act.

Pimentel said the minority bloc is merely echoing the apprehensions of the people about rampant and unsolved extra-judicial killings of political activists and is seeking adequate safeguards against abuse of human rights by law enforcers in implementing the proposed law against terrorism.

They are just muddling the issue by claiming that politics is to blame for the delay in the approval of the Anti-Terrorism Bill. What is to blame is the fact that the bill needs refinement in many respects, he said.

First, the definition of who are covered by the bill and the acts that are defined to be criminal.

Second, the spelling out of protective measures to safeguard the human rights of the people; and

Third, a guarantee that bill wont be abused by the administration and used to harass critics of Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.

Pimentel said the danger is great that under this paranoid government, even a good law would wind up an instrument of oppression.

On the Philippine National Polices promise to solve more political killings within the Presidents 10-week deadline, he said the people do not need only solutions to the political killings; they need protection from more killings.

On President Arroyos proposal for a global meeting on terrorism, Pimentel said it sound hollow in the light of the continuing slaughter of the innocent and the unarmed in the cities and in the countryside.

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