Philippine violence escalates

The largest and most violent antigovernment rally in recent years marked the 11th anniversary of martial law in the Philippines Wednesday, Monitor contributor Emilia Tagaza writes.

The confrontation between Philippine police and demonstrators was the latest in a series of public protests over the killing of opposition leader Benigno Aquino Jr. Aug. 21. At least eight were killed and 105 injured in the demonstration.

Climaxing a series of protest rallies during the last two weeks, about 100, 000 antigovernment people staged a peaceful four-hour rally in downtown Manila. Protesters chanted, calling for the resignation of President Ferdinand Marcos. About 10,000 of the original crowd, mostly students, later marched to Marcos's official Malacanang Palace, shouting ''Marcos resign.''

After several minutes of peaceful but tense confrontation between students and policemen in front of the palace, stones were thrown, followed by gunshots from riot police. The demonstrators also set fire to five government buses barricading the main road leading to the palace.

In Washington, meanwhile, a White House spokesman said Wednesday that President Reagan still intends to make a state visit to the Philippines in November.

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