The Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Philippines announced on 19 December, that it will not declare a ceasefire during the Christmas and New Year holidays. There is absolutely no reason to declare a ceasefire,” the CPP said. 

The CPP said, ”the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) continue its military operations and attacks in many communities in the countryside, placing several villages under military control by hamletting. The troops abuse the villagers and violate their basic rights by restricting them from working in their fields, illegally searching their houses, illegally arresting and torturing them, and forcing them to surrender and falsely presenting them as New People’s Army (NPA) combatants.”

The CPP says the Marcos regime and it’s armed forces have relentlessly violated human rights and international humanitarian law. The AFP conducts aerial bombing and strafing, shelling of farm fields and nearby forests, and many other atrocities. The military and police committed no less than 45 political killings since Marcos Jr. took power. They also violated the human rights of 47,000 people in the same period, according to the CPP.

The CPP authorized the NPA to mount tactical offensives for the next days, saying, ”It is the duty of the NPA to come to the people’s armed defense even during the holidays.” It directed the people’s army through its National Operational Command and Regional and Subregional Commands to actively fight and frustrate the AFP’s campaign of armed suppression.

The CPP issued the directive even as ”...we mourn the recent passing away of our beloved comrade Jose Maria Sison” who died of illness in a hospital in the Netherlands on 16 December.

In another statement, Marco Valbuena, Chief Information Officer of the CPP, scoffed at the claim of the Marcos’ defense officials that Jose Maria Sison’s death meant the demise of the revolutionary movement. He said, “Through his leadership, Ka Joma produced countless cadres and leaders capable of leading the party and carrying forward the revolutionary cause far into the future.”

Units of the NPA everywhere in the country performed a silent 21-gun salute on 26 December, the CPP’s 54th anniversary, by way of giving the highest tribute and bidding farewell to the beloved leader.