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Fil-Ams in New York stage protest ahead of Martial Law anniversary declaration

Don Tagala | TFC News New York

Posted at Sep 21 2023 12:20 PM

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Filipino-American activists staged a protest in New York City ahead of the 51st anniversary of the declaration of Martial Law in the Philippines.

Tabitha Ponciano of the Malaya Movement USA said it was important to remember the sacrifice of those who stood up for human rights during the years-long military rule.

Protesters also slammed the current government's plan to disassociate the word "dictatorship" from Ferdinand Marcos Sr.

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They stressed that now more than ever, there is a need to safeguard the country's history against attempts to revise it.

"It is integral to ensure that our history is truthful and genuine," said Jordan Faralen of Anakbayan USA. "It is integral that our history is not erased."

While Martial Law may have been lifted a long time ago, many of the protesters believe that some aspects of the military regime remain in place.

"[It] continues to this day through the institutionalization of a militarized civilian bureaucracy," said Adiran Bonifacio of Bayan USA. "It is institutionalized through the Anti-Terror Law, the NTF-ELCAC."

Bonifacio added: "We're here to say that we’re going to continue to resist it just as activists did during the Martial Law period."

The march was also held ahead of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.'s visit to San Francisco for the APEC Summit in November.