21 September 2017

News Story: 1,000 soldiers on standby in Philippines for "national day of protest"

MANILA, Sept. 20 (Xinhua) -- The Philippine military has put over 1,000 soldiers on standby in case some groups try to disrupt the rally scheduled on Thursday to commemorate the martial law that former President Ferdinand Marcos imposed in 1972.

Military spokesman Col. Vic Tomas said on Wednesday that the soldiers are on call to help the police in maintaining peace and order when some 10,000 protesters are expected to take to the streets on Thursday, a day Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte declared as a "national day of protest."

Sept. 21 this year marks the 45th anniversary of the declaration of martial law by former President Marcos, who ruled the country for two decades from 1965 to 1986.

Police Director Oscar Albayalde, the chief of the Philippine National Police in the National Capital Region, said security measures are in place for the planned rally, noting that 600 members of the civil disturbance management contingent are also on standby.

At the same time, 400 anti-riot policemen will be posted to guard the U.S. embassy in Manila. Another 100 policemen will be deployed around the gates leading to the Malacanang presidential palace where Duterte holds office.

Read the full story at Xinhua