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MANILA, Philippines — The government’s list of most wanted suspects for media killings is “absurd.”

Communist Party of the Philippines founder Jose Maria Sison blasted Friday night the police and the Arroyo administration for releasing the list that showed he is the No. 1 wanted suspect for media killings.

In an interview with GMANews.TV, Sison said the wanted list was a “squid tactic” to “conceal the criminal responsibilities” of the administration.

“This is absurd. The Arroyo regime wants to deflect the public’s attention from the rampant human rights violations committed by the military like torturing and abduction (of leftists workers),” Sison said in Filipino.

The communist leader said if he could make his own list of suspects responsible for the rampant killing of journalists, he would include Mrs. Arroyo and those working for her to “cover-up the government’s gross human rights violations.”

The Philippine National Police (PNP) on Friday afternoon released a list of the most wanted suspects for media killings. It was composed of mostly leftist personalities. Sison topped the chart with a P10-million bounty placed on his head.

He was followed by Gregorio “Ka Roger” Rosal, the current spokesman of the CPP’s armed wing, the New People’s Army (NPA), with P5-million reward for his arrest.

Sison and Rosal were tagged for the killing of Nelson Nadura in December 2003. The CPP founder denied having a hand in the hard-hitting journalist’s slay.

Sison, who is currently exiled in The Netherlands, also laughed off the bounty and suggested in jest that the government pay the country’s ambassador to The Netherlands for his arrest.

Asked if the police’s wanted list would affect the peace talks between the government and the CPP, Sison said it might as he questioned the government’s sincerity to push for the accord.

Sison said while they are very much interested in pushing for a genuine peace accord, achieving peace under the Arroyo administration would be difficult as it continues to “deceive” them. – Aie Balagtas See, GMANews.TV

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