Interior and Local Government Secretary Eduardo Año yesterday had this to say about the reported plot of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) to assassinate him and several Cabinet officials spearheading President Duterte’s counterinsurgency program.
Geremy Pintolo/ File
Año: Get Reds before they get us
Emmanuel Tupas (The Philippine Star) - December 6, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — “We will get them before they can execute their plan.”

Interior and Local Government Secretary Eduardo Año yesterday had this to say about the reported plot of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) to assassinate him and several Cabinet officials spearheading President Duterte’s counterinsurgency program.

Año said he will never back down from their goal to end the decades-old  communist insurgency even if his life is now under threat.

“I will not be intimidated by such an evil plot. We are prepared for that,” he said in a text message.

Maj. Gen. Antonio Parlade Jr., deputy chief of staff for civil military operations of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, said Año, National Security Adviser Hermogenes Esperon Jr. and National Commission on Indigenous Peoples chairman Allen Capuyan are included in the hit list.

Parlade said he and five former communist leaders who are helping the government end insurgency in the country are also on the list under Oplan Hades, a program for the CPP against counter-revolutionaries.

He said the  New People’s Army’s hit squad, Special Partisan Unit, was tasked to do the job.

Año sees no need to beef up his security despite the threat from the CPP, adding he will continue implementing the President’s program to convince communist rebels in the countryside to surrender and return to the fold of the government.

“There  is no need because my security measures are enough. Like a soldier, I am always prepared to fight,” he said.

The Philippine National Police (PNP), for its part, downplayed the reported assassination plot against Año and the other officials.

According to PNP spokesman  Brig. Gen. Bernard Banac, the CPP is always issuing threats weeks before it celebrates its founding anniversary on Dec. 26.

CPP founding chairman Jose Ma. Sison neither confirmed nor denied the assassination plot, saying these are operational matters involving the NPA.

He said that Parlade is simply engaged in a psywar, but noted that he does not think “the NPA will give operational details to their enemy.” – With Jaime Laude

EDUARDO AñO
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