DAVAO CITY, Philippines—Lawmakers criticized President Duterte for his seemingly inconsistent stand against the United States’ colonial atrocities, saying the deployment of a US combat drone in Mindanao does not sit well with his previous statements.
“The president is a turncoat, of his criticism of US colonial atrocities against the Moro people and declaration of breaking up with the foreign power,” Anakpawis Representative Ariel Casilao said in a statement on Wednesday, September 13.
The US military forces deployed a Gray Eagle unmanned aircraft vehicle (UAV) which can be equipped with missiles for airstrikes.
Casilao said the US drone deployment under the guise of fighting terrorism is against the Moro people’s clamor for peace.
He added that this might result to the killing of thousands of civilians, citing the use of combat drones that devastated several countries such as Pakistan, Yemen, Afghanistan, Somalia and Iraq.
“We will not exonerate him if these drones are to kill a single innocent life in the country as he will be causal of renewed historical injustice against the Moro and Filipino people,” the lawmaker from Davao said.
In a separate statement, ACT Teachers Representative Antonio Tinio also denounced the deployment of the Gray Eagle combat drone, saying this could be used to conduct reconnaissance and surveillance missions in support of the Duterte administration’s war against Muslim militants in Marawi.
“This represents an unprecedented escalation in the level of intervention of the US government in the war in Marawi,” Tinio said.
The Gray Eagle (General Atomics MQ-1C Unmanned Aircraft System) is the new and upgraded version of the notorious Predator drone. Aside from its surveillance capabilities, it can be armed with four precision-guided Hellfire missiles to attack and destroy targets on the ground. (davaotoday.com)General Atomics MQ-1C, Gray Eagle, Martial Law, Military Intervention, rodrigo duterte, United States, US Drone, US intervention, US troops