EUROPEAN COURT TO HEAR SISON COMPLAINT
AGAINST TERRORIST BLACKLIST OF EU COUNCIL
Issued by the International DEFEND Committee
28 April 2009
The European Court of First Instance will hear the complaint of Prof. Jose
Maria Sison in Case T-341/07 against his inclusion in the so-called terrorist
blacklist of the Council of the European Union in Luxembourg on 30 April
2009, starting at 9:30 a.m. The hearing shall be held at Rue du Fort
Niedergruenewald at the European Court of Justice in Kirchberg-Luxembourg.
The Council of the EU has continued to blacklist Prof. Sison despite the
judgment of the European Court in his favor on 11 July 2007 requiring
the Council to annul its decision to blacklist Prof. Sison and declaring the
Council as having infringed the rights of defense, the obligation to state
reasons and the right to effective judicial protection.
Prof. Sison is demanding his removal from the so-called terrorist blacklist on
the ground that the Council has infringed the following: 1) the obligation
to state reasons and make a truthful assessment, 2) Article 2 (3) of
Regulation No. 2580/2001 and Article 1 (4) of Common Position 2001/931,
3) the principle of proportionality and 4) the general principles of Community
law and fundamental rights.
Prof. Sison appears before the European Court in a stronger legal position
than ever before because his prosecution on the false charges of inciting
the killing of Philippine military agents was terminated by the Dutch prosecution
office last 31 March 2009 due to lack of evidence, as had been ruled previously
in judgments of Dutch judicial authorities (district court of The Hague, appellate
court and the examining judge).
The aforesaid termination of prosecution is relevant to the case before the
European court. It shows the lack of concrete evidence for the allegation
that Prof. Sison is Armando Liwanag or chairman of the Communist Party of
the Philippines (CPP) as well as for the allegation that he is culpable for any
violent act of the New People's Army, despite the close collaboration of Dutch
and Philippine political authorities in trying to criminalize him.
The Council has continuously failed to cite any decision of any competent
national judicial authority to prove Prof. Sison's involvement in any specific
act of terrorism. In desperation, the Council has misrepresented as decisions
on Prof. Sison's culpability for terrorism Dutch court decisions on his application
for political asylum in the 1990s and the recent Dutch court decisions on the
false charges of inciting murder.
In fact, the Dutch Council of State in 1992 and 1995 and the Dutch Law
Uniformity Chamber in 1997 ruled that Prof. Sison is a political refugee under
Article 1 A of the Refugee Convention because he has no criminal liability as
to disqualify him from being recognized as such. The District Court of The
Hague and the Appellate Court in 2007 ruled that there is no sufficient evidence
against him for the incitation of murder. The passing statement that there
are indications or clues that he plays a prominent role in the CPP does not
mean culpability for any criminal act of terrorism.
The so-called terrorist blacklisting of the CPP and NPA by the US, EU and other
foreign governments is completely anomalous because under Philippine law
the CPP is already legal by virtue of the repeal of the Anti-Subversion Law in
1992 and because under Philippine law the violent revolutionary acts of the
NPA against military targets are deemed as acts of rebellion and under
international laws of war as acts of belligerency in a civil war.
On the basis of the Marty report and recommendations, the Parliamentary
Assembly of the Council of Europe has condemned EU blacklisting procedures
as violative of human rights. Legal experts and human rights organizations
have cited the case of Prof. Sison to express outrage over the violation of
his fundamental rights.
Prof. Sison has been actually subjected to punitive measures for more
than six years under the pretext of temporary administrative restrictive
measures. Civil death is imposed on him as he is prohibited from having legal
residence, earning an income, receiving a living allowance, holding a house,
having sufficient insurance coverage, receiving old age pension and travelling
By being merely blacklisted as a "terrorist", Prof. Sison has suffered a fate
worse than that of a criminal convicted for murder or even the prime
suspects in 9-11 who are assured of their essential needs by UN resolution.
Until now, the Dutch Finance Minister prohibits Prof. Sison from having financial
transaction of any kind and from receiving any social payment for his essential
human needs. Friends are outraged by the inhumanity of the EU and the
Dutch government and lend Prof. Sison the resources for his subsistence and
Prof. Sison has an international battery of lawyers. The lead lawyer is Jan
Fermon of Belgium. The other lawyers are Eberhard Schultz and Wolfgang
Kaleck of Germany, Antoine Comte of France, former UN Judge Romeo T.
Capulong of the Philippines, Mathieu Beys of Belgium and Dundar Gurses of
The Netherlands. Those who wish to inquire further on the case may call
Jan Fermon at 32-475441896.
You may contact:
International DEFEND Committee
Call: +31-6-246 76 537