By LITO RULONA
HUMAN rights group Karapatan-northern Mindanao called the commemoration of Independence Day in Marawi on Monday initiated by the Armed Forces a “fake celebration.”
In an emailed statement, Fr. Christopher Ablon, Karapatan-NMR secretary general, said the celebrations broadcasted on various TV networks was “nothing but a show and a mere soap opera drama production of the AFP.”
Ablon is referring to the AFP announcement on Monday on the occasion of the 119th Philippine independence day commemoration that they will hoist Philippine flags all over Marawi City.
He said the hoisting of flags is supposed to symbolize that the city is cleared of the Dawlah Islamiyah group maliciously dubbed as Maute.
“Sumala sa among interview sa mga biktima nga anaa sa evacuation center, among nasuta ang kusog kaayo nga sentimento ug panawagan sa mga bakwit nga hunongon na ang air strike ug undangon na ang martial law,” said Ablon.
He added that the people of Marawi can only truly celebrate Independence Day is when martial law is lifted and the air strikes stop.
Karapatan together with Rural Missionaries in the Philippines along with other progressive organizations formed the Kalinaw Mindanao and is now in Iligan city in order to respond the huminatarian needs of the Marawi crisis.
Kalinaw Mindanao will conduct a National Inter-faith Humanitarian Mission on June 13 to 16.
The mission will include components of relief, medical, psycho-social and documentation and will come up with recommendations to government and non-government entities for policy advocacy and for further immediate and long term humanitarian response.