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PIA Press Release
2006/10/10

Commentary: Pass anti–terrorism law, protect the helpless

By Aurora J. Casimpan

Tacloban City (10 October) -- Is the Philippines becoming a haven for terrorists? Past events have shown that terrorists have been using the country as preparatory center for bombings happening in other countries. Recently the wife of Indonesian Terrorist suspect Dulmatin, has been captured in Patikul, Joli. Upon interrogation she admitted that her husband and another Jemaah Islamiyah bomb expert Umar Patek are in hiding in Jolo protected by the Abu Sayaff terror group.

While the government has a program on anti-terrorism and has reduced the threat of terrorism in the country, changing terrorists is impossible as the country has no anti-terrorism law. Apparently, the Senate has forgotten to act on the passage of the bill.

The absence of an anti-terrorism law has emboldened terrorists tom use the country as a place to conduct terroristic activities, which in the past have sown chaos and fear in the countryside. Casualties among the citizens have resulted in death and destruction of properties. Worse terrorism is a culprit in the stagnation of the economy as some investors are scared of investing in a region where terroristic events are known to happen.

The country security forces while committed to do their job get demoralized knowing that captured terrorists would simply walk away because of the absence of an anti-terrorism law. Of what use risking the lives of government security forces which would only result in helplessly watching the culprits sneak away the freedom.

It’s time the Senate sit down and get serious with the passage of the anti-terrorism law. The people expect the legislators to do its job of protecting lives and properties.

No less is expected from those responsible in ensuring that the country and its people are secure from all kinds of harm inflected from the demented minds of terrorists. (PIA-8) [top]

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