Local NGOs face Belgium, EU probe

Local NGOs face Belgium, EU probe

Both the European Union (EU) and the Belgian government are set to inspect nongovernment organizations (NGOs) based in the Philippines on suspicion of being used as fronts of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) and the New People’s Army (NPA), the Armed Forces of the Philippines divulged details on Friday.

Brig. Gen. Antonio Parlade Jr., the AFP’s deputy chief of staff for civil-military operations, noted that at least seven NGOs getting funds from the EU and Belgium were being used to set up recruitments for NPA members.

Parlade divulged The EUav handed an initial 621,000 euros to the NGOs. While, Belgium had planned to issue 3 million euros a year for 5-7 years onto these groups. Further financial assistance to the amount of 1.3 million euros would follow later.

In the previous month, a delegation from Manila including Parlade went to Brussels to discuss with EU officials, members of the European Parliament and the European Commission of the government’s concern that some groups being funded may have been involved in communist activities to join the NPA. The Philippine delegation requested EU officials to halt giving monetary aid to these organizations.

“The engagement in EU was exploratory. Now that they gave their commitment (to investigate the incidents), the Philippine government will soon provide them necessary documentations, official reports, evidences or whatever administrative actions done on the part of the Philippine government,” Parlade disclosed.

Parlade added that Gunnar Wiegand, managing director for Asia and the Pacific of the European External Action Service, bantered the CPP and NPA should have realized that communism “all over the world is dead.”

In October last year, the Armed Forces of the Philippines let out a list of 17 universities in Metro Manila where communists were allegedly recruiting students in 10 universities in Metro Manila to join their group.

Reports have included the University of the Philippines, Polytechnic University of the Philippines, Ateneo de Manila University, De La Salle University, and the University of Santo Tomas among the hot spots.

Armed Forces Chief of Staff Gen. Carlito Galvez had added that communists’ insurgents also infiltrated the labor sector as well.

Earlier this year, NPA members gave up to the police confirmed that insurgents forced students to join their ranks. Students who visit mountain communities as part of their “immersion” program were susceptible and that they could no longer back out because they were told of their treason to the government.

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