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Militarization of PH denied

Militarization does not exist in the country despite the deployment of troops to protect and defend the nation from security threats, President Duterte declared yesterday.

The President explained that he needs government troops “in every inch” of Philippine territory “just for law and order purposes.”

“There is no such thing as militarization. Every inch of this property of the Republic must be occupied by the soldiers of the government,” the President said in a late night news conference in Davao City when to comment on the appeal of Lumad leaders to end the militarization in their communities.

“There is no such thing na hindi kayo papasok divan kasi may ‘no militarization’ there. Siguro yung overt acts na makipag-away, ‘yan ang iniiwasan,” he added.

The President acknowledged that the “idealogical conflict” has developed in some indigenous people’s communities due to the presence of Alamara paramilitary group and those sympathizing with the local communist group. “Kanya-kanyang sphere of influence,” he added.

Thousands of indigenous people have fled their homes in some parts of Mindanao due to the reported atrocities committed by a paramilitary force. The military has been accused of supporting the paramilitary group as part of its anti-insurgency operations. (Genalyn D. Kabiling)