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Human Rights Day rally to protest 'rehabilitation' of Marcos

Young people who flocked to the Luneta for the November 25 #BlackFriday protest against the burial of the dictator Ferdinand Marcos at the Libingan ng mga Bayani.
The online news portal of TV5

MANILA, Philippines -- An organization that counts survivors of the Marcos dictatorship is organizing yet another protest on December 10, International Human Rights Day, to call for an end to the administration's efforts to “rehabilitate” the late strongman, whose burial at the Libingan ng mga Bayani has sparked outrage.

“We will defy age and illness to make December 10 a grand assembly of Marcos victims; a strong statement to the Duterte administration that we will never forget and that we victims will not be forgotten,” the Campaign Against the Return of the Marcoses to Malacañang, or CARMMA, said in a statement Friday.

CARMMA spearheaded the November 25 #BlackFriday protest at the Luneta Park that drew at least 15,000 people exactly a week after the secretive and hurried burial of Marcos at the heroes’ cemetery.

Another mass action took place at the People Power Monument on EDSA on November 30, Bonifacio Day, this one organized by the Coalition Against the Marcos Burial at the Libingan ng mga Bayani, or CAMB-LNMB.

Protesters have also vented their anger at President Rodrigo Duterte, who ordered the Libingan burial, admittedly to fulfill a promise he made to the Marcos family. Even communist rebels, who have resumed formal peace talks with the government, have cited the Marcos burial among the issues that could jeopardize the negotiations.

“There is a great sense of urgency in our call,” CARMMA said. “The rehabilitation of Marcoses and their return to power threaten any hope for meaningful indemnification and justice for victims.”

“Let our numbers stand as the living testimony of the crimes of the US-backed Marcos dictatorship. Let our scars serve as evidence of the atrocities of the dictatorship. Let us come forward in great numbers for the fight for justice is by no means over. The Marcoses and their associates have yet to be truly held accountable for gross human rights violations and plunder,” it added.

The group also blasted what it called “the collusion between Duterte and (the) Marcoses,” which it said “threatens everything that victims stood and died for” and “contradicts the Duterte regime's avowals of change.”

CARMMA also called on the sector whose presence at the earlier protests made the most waves, the youth, or the so-called millennials.

“For every Marcos victim and survivor who will stand and march on December 10, let there be one youth who will link arms with them and carry on the fight,” CARMMA said.

“Let our December 10 rally be a stern warning to government: that continuing human rights violations and the revival of more repressive measures will be met with strong opposition from the people who continue to cry ‘Never Again’," it added.

Organizers said they will be announcing the venue of the December 10 protest soon.