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Ski Mask

yeah....you might not want to touch those....

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Armed men take up positions in Manila

 

Plastic explosives set up in financial district, they say

 

Saturday, July 26, 2003 Posted: 8:32 PM EDT (0032 GMT)

 

http://i.cnn.net/cnn/2003/WORLD/asiapcf/southeast/07/26/arroyo.officers/story.manila.explosives.ap.jpg'>

 

 

 

 

MANILA, Philippines (CNN) -- About 50 rogue members of the Philippine armed forces barricaded themselves in the capital's financial district early Sunday, claiming to have rigged explosives and accusing the government of conspiracy.

 

The armed men, who wore camouflage uniforms and identified themselves as members of the military, set up devices near the Rustan department store in the Glorietta Shopping Center. The location, in the Makati district, is near two five-star hotels, the Intercontinental and the Oakwood.

 

The men warned that the devices might detonate and urged onlookers not to approach.

 

A spokesman for the group said its actions were not part of a coup attempt, despite a week of rumors that disgruntled officers within the 113,000-strong Philippine armed forces were plotting one. The spokesman said rigging the devices was a way for the soldiers to air a complaint against the government of President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo.

 

Late Saturday, 36 of the military members released a video in which they accused Arroyo of selling arms to rebel groups and carrying out a series of bombings that the government has blamed on the rebels.

 

The group said Arroyo, 56, was conspiring to declare martial law so she could remain in power after her term expires next year.

 

The government issued a statement calling the accusation "a lie," and said the soldiers themselves could be victims of propaganda.

 

The soldiers' accusation plays on the fears of many Filipinos after the infamous 21-year term of President Ferdinand Marcos.

 

Marcos instigated a series of bombings and civil unrest in the late 1960s and early 1970s, using that as an excuse to declare martial law in 1972. It took the People Power Revolt of 1986 to end Marcos' time in office.

 

The soldiers' accusation also strikes at the level of confidence Filipinos have in the Arroyo government's efforts to fight terrorism. Since the attacks of September 11, 2001, in the United States, the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) has been accused of carrying out terrorist acts in the southern Philippines. It has been blamed for two attacks in the past year alone.

 

MILF, the largest Muslim separatist group, had been widely seen as having a legitimate political grievance, but since the September 11 attacks it has been marginalized, and its links to other terrorist groups have hit at its credibility. The soldier's statement Saturday appeared to be an attempt to reverse that perception.

 

Sen. Gregorio Honasan, who was implicated two years ago in a plot to overthrow Arroyo, will be charged with involvement in the coup attempt, a cabinet secretary said Sunday on Philippine TV.

 

Honasan, who announced this month he was seeking to run for either president or vice president next year, is a former military officer who led seven bloody coup attempts in the 1980s.

 

Early Sunday, the standoff in the Makati district continued, with the soldiers barricading the area to prevent anyone from leaving or entering.

 

Guests at the Oakwood Hotel, which contains serviced apartments popular with expatriates, said the men prevented them from leaving. The guests included two Americans and several employees of the Australian Embassy.

 

"We are aware of the situation and [are] trying to make contact with parties in the building," said Bob Philips, a spokesman for the hotel chain.

 

An employee of the Intercontinental Hotel told CNN that none of its guests had checked out.

 

"The whole hotel is safe, at the moment," said Robert Pictor, a guest service agent. Still, he added, guests are being advised to enter and leave through the hotel's back door, away from where the armed forces were encamped.

 

Troops loyal to the government ringed the rogue soldiers with armored personnel carriers and trucks.

 

One of the armed men said they were laying C4 explosives, but CNN was not able to verify that claim. Gray and black devices were seen lying on curbs and hanging from street signs.

 

The Philippine armed forces confirmed the men are members of the military.

 

One of the armed men said they were trying to enter negotiations with the military.

 

Arroyo has ordered the arrest and court-martial of junior "rogue officers" who walked off their posts carrying their weapons this week, an act authorities called a "mutiny." In a statement released before the barricade was put up, she said the events represented an attack on the political system in the Philippines.

 

"They have broken the law," Arroyo said. "They will be court-martialed."

 

Armed Forces Chief Gen. Narciso Abaya said 10 officers and 50 enlisted personnel took part in the earlier action. Many have been disarmed and detained and others are being sought, he said.

 

"We have confirmed that these officers and soldiers have deserted their posts, bringing with them weapons and have associated themselves with some groups with personal and/or political interest," Abaya said.

 

Abaya identified 10 officers and ordered they be court-martialed for "mutiny and conspiracy to commit rebellion."

 

The military has been beset by widespread grievances over such issues as pay, housing and insurance. Soldiers have also complained of being ordered to serve for long periods of time in the southern part of the country, where government forces have been fighting Muslim rebels.

 

CNN Jakarta bureau chief Maria Ressa in Manila contributed to this report

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sometimes i seriously consider going on a suicide mission to help america out.

 

im not sure if i could get close enough to kill mr. bush though.

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Guest 455

heavy ammunition-rat-rat-tat-tat-tat..I'm on a mission....

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There HAS been alot of bombings over there lately. The Moros have actually preserved alot of the phillipines old ways from colonization. It's really rather amazing how the phillipinos have taken this schism and developed it into martial arts and separate religions.

Does anyone know of some good international news portals? I used to go to newsbooster but the dutch government shut that down for deep linking news.

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Guest BROWNer

more bullshit stemming from religious retardedness.

the MILF guys, from what i've researched, do

have a legitimate political grievance..

but it's hard to tell what's what info-wise.

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Guest imported_Tesseract

wake up BROWN, its a revolution bro....hit aim for details on how to disarm a vicious johnny

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i was really hoping for some pics of some kind of wierd super poisonous insects....but i guess explosives and stuff will do....

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