Philippines President declares state of emergency

Manila, Sep 5 (IANS) Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday declared a state of national emergency on the account of lawlessness, the Malacanang Presidential Palace said.

Presidential Communications Office Assistant Secretary Kristian Ablan told the media that “the proclamation technically took effect today (Monday) and remains in force until lifted by the president”, Xinhua news agency reported.

He said that Duterte “can call out the military as commander-in-chief by virtue of the constitution”.

Ablan said the proclamation is mainly ordering both the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Philippines National Police to undertake measures permitted by the constitution and laws and “suppress all forms of lawless violence in Mindanao and prevent violence from spreading elsewhere across the country”.

He said the state of emergency gives “due regard to fundamental and civil political rights and has nothing to do with martial law or the suspension of the writ of habeas corpus”.

“It’s just a stepped-up campaign of the police and the military to ensure the safety of the general public,” Ablan said.

–IANS

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