Philippine Death Squads: Government & Rebels both point fingers

May 20, 2006 at 7:05 am 2 comments

It has many on the sidelines puzzled who is really behind the wave of killings hiting the Philippine countryside and cities. At present some groiups seeing the reports from UNHCR and others are pressing the US, EU, and Australia to stop military aid until the situation improves.

 

Three years ago the first international reports came out citing the increasing levels of vioence. The report however focuses more on the plight of children and concern over the welfare of those orphaned in the growing conflict and return of a more violent insurgency.They UNHCR in 2003 did note a "State reforms" but, " lack of appropriate measures to investigate crimes allegedly committed by state security forces and agents"

" Positive aspects "

1. The Committee appreciates the progress made by the State party to reform its domestic legal order to comply with its commitments under the Covenant. It welcomes, among other actions, the ratification of the Optional Protocol to the Covenant in August 1989. The Committee considers that the process of reform should be accelerated and strengthened.
2. The Committee notes with satisfaction that the State party has facilitated international assistance in relation to education and training on the protection of human rights.

" Principal subjects of concern and recommendations "
" The Committee is concerned about the lack of appropriate measures to investigate crimes allegedly committed by state security forces and agents, in particular those committed against human rights defenders, journalists and leaders of indigenous peoples, and the lack of measures taken to prosecute and punish the perpetrators. Furthermore, the Committee is concerned at reports of intimidation and threats of retaliation impeding the right to an effective remedy for persons whose rights and freedoms have been violated. "

" The State party should adopt legislative and other measures to prevent such violations, in keeping with articles 2, 6 and 9 of the Covenant, and ensure effective enforcement of the legislation. "

But the recent level of violence is seen not only as a Government issue – the cycle of violence has grown to a level that is alarming.

On one side the Government points to mass graves and claims a purge versus their effective infilltraition of rebel groups has proof of rebel killings of leaders who are becoming mainstream or shying away from armed fighting.

PURGE: "Rebels are killing off their own"

" Palparan…. claimed the killings were part of another round of a bloody purge in the Communist Party of the Philippines and its allied organizations. " adding " This is Operation Missing Link Part two,” Palparan said. The first part, known then as Kampanyang Ahos, happened in the 1980s, mostly in the Bicol and Southern Tagalog regions." he told the Philippine Daily Inquirer.

But this is something the Rebel movement denies; claiming it is only a cover story…

The National Democratic Front (NDF) deny a purge within the NPA.
“The government’s false allegation of a purge within the revolutionary movement is meant to further justify more extrajudicial killings,” Luis Jalandoni, the NDF chairman of peace negotiating panel, said in a statement. Jalandoni said the allegations of a purge are part of a propaganda campaign launched by the military.

"The preposterous claim of a purge within the revolutionary movement has long been exposed as a lie by the thinly veiled and arrogant boasts of [Maj. Gen. Jovito] Palparan,” – Manila Times

Maj. Gen. Jovito Parlpalan is the focus of the rebel leaders reactions after he revealed the new discoveries of mass graves and alleged new plot to purge rebel ranks.

Parlpalan has taken pains to secure sites recovered and brought government forensic teams as well as intenrational Human rights groups to the sites of "Mass Graves" his troops have uncovered in the Countryside. Media groups have also focused in the Philippines their attention on Gen. Parlpalan.

Someone – is killing militant leaders that is clear Bulatlat.com reports the figure is up to 97 members of organizations killed on the left of the spectrum of Philippine Politics. It also reports that 3 have been killed and others wounded in the last three days.

" … 97th victim either of killing or involuntary disappearance in Central Luzon since 2005.

Last year, 52 members or leaders of Bayan in the region were killed and seven were abducted and remained missing. Since January of this year, 26 have been killed while 13 were abducted… "

 

Meanwhile a press release say a "independant group" will carry out its investigation into the both the death squad reports and mass graves and killings. The commision is planning to look into various reports – but both sides the Military and the leftist groups seem so intent at pointing a finger at each other that one wonders if there will be a clear result to this.

Reports like this one however continue to puzzle me… 40 or more bodies none of whem are listed on the cause oriented groups list of people killed.

MANILA, MAY 15, 2006 (STAR) By Paolo Romero – The military and the police are now uncovering the graves of supposed victims of an ongoing purge of communist rebels in the country in their effort to flush out alleged government agents, National Security Adviser Norberto Gonzales said yesterday. Gonzales, who has begun a probe into the reported bloody purge within the ranks of the Communist Party of the Philippines and the New People’s Army (CPP-NPA), though could not elaborate if the so-called mass graves were similar to the mass pits uncovered in the 1980s during similar purges by communist guerrilla forces. "They (military officials) told me that there are graves being dug in Mindanao believed to be that of the victims of this purge," Gonzales said. He said one such grave was located in Bukidnon but he did not elaborate on the exact place.

 

 

 

 

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Entry filed under: asia, Filipino, freedom of speech, news, News and politics, News Of China, philippines, protests, Rants, Raves, Whathaveyou..., republican, terrorism, Uncategorized, Views, war on terror.

Philippine Death Squads: International ‘think tank’ & UNESCO monitoring ‘Dangerous Islands’ Fernando ‘Dong’ Batul:Broadcaster killed by gunmen

2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. mikeinmanila  |  May 22, 2006 at 5:05 pm

    Just an article I saw…

    Monday, May 22, 2006
    Army, rebel group trade raps on executions
    By Lino Dela Cruz
    Iligan Correspondent

    CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY — The National Democratic Front (NDF) in Mindanao blamed Sunday the military for the spate of killings in the island, which claimed the lives of some 21 militant personalities, including media practitioners.

    NDF spokesman Jorge Madlos alias “Ka Oris” in a statement said the recent killing of Calamba, Misamis Occidental Pastor Jeremias Tinambacan and the wounding of his wife Malou, was the handiwork of the military’s “Mindanao Death Squad.”

    The NDF said that in nine months, since September 2005 up to May 6 this year, at least 21 personalities in Mindanao were killed.

    It said the recent discovery by the military of a supposed “killing fields” in Kibungkod, San Fernando, Bukidnon province, is not true.

    Philippine Army’s 4th Infantry Division commander Cardozo Luna said the mass grave found in Bukidnon belonged to civilians suspected by the communist rebels to be informers or “assets” of the military and were summarily executed.

    The NDF denied the charges of the military.

    “Mindanao Death Squad is composed of army regulars, thugs, and former (New People’s Army) NPA rebels who are under the supervision of the military,” Madlos said.

    The NDF called on the people to condemn these killings in Mindanao and Luzon.

    “The NPA reserves the right to punitive action against those involved in these criminal acts,” Madlos said.

    The military and the NPA have been accusing each other of resorting to executions in order to eliminate targets.

    Last week the military said three members of the NPA suspected to be spies, were executed by their own comrades in Mt. Balatukan Complex, Gingoog City Misamis Oriental, after they were reportedly set to surrender to the government.

    Shortly after the United Church of Christ in the Philippines and an organization of lawyers chided the military for trying to coerce some members to sign affidavits attesting that they are NPA rebels and are responsible for the killings in their province.

    Earlier, Fourth Infantry Division spokesman Francisco Simbajon said all NPA members have a group called SK or Silu Kamatayon Sa Tanang Mga traydor Sa Kalihukan (Death Penalty For Traitors to the Movement).

    “This incident is not new to the NPA members so the others they try to escape,” he said in a text message. (Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro/Sunnex) The NDF said that in nine months, since September 2005 up to May 6 this year, at least 21 personalities in Mindanao were killed.

    It said the recent discovery by the military of a supposed “killing fields” in Kibungkod, San Fernando, Bukidnon province, is not true.

    Philippine Army’s 4th Infantry Division commander Cardozo Luna said the mass grave found in Bukidnon belonged to civilians suspected by the communist rebels to be informers or “assets” of the military and were summarily executed.

    The NDF denied the charges of the military.

    “Mindanao Death Squad is composed of army regulars, thugs, and former (New People’s Army) NPA rebels who are under the supervision of the military,” Madlos said.

    The NDF called on the people to condemn these killings in Mindanao and Luzon.

    “The NPA reserves the right to punitive action against those involved in these criminal acts,” Madlos said.

    The military and the NPA have been accusing each other of resorting to executions in order to eliminate targets.

    Last week the military said three members of the NPA suspected to be spies, were executed by their own comrades in Mt. Balatukan Complex, Gingoog City Misamis Oriental, after they were reportedly set to surrender to the government.

    Shortly after the United Church of Christ in the Philippines and an organization of lawyers chided the military for trying to coerce some members to sign affidavits attesting that they are NPA rebels and are responsible for the killings in their province.

    Earlier, Fourth Infantry Division spokesman Francisco Simbajon said all NPA members have a group called SK or Silu Kamatayon Sa Tanang Mga traydor Sa Kalihukan (Death Penalty For Traitors to the Movement).

    “This incident is not new to the NPA members so the others they try to escape,” he said in a text message. (Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro/Sunnex)

    Reply
  • 2. mikeinmanila  |  May 25, 2006 at 11:41 am

    ——————————————————————————–

    [] Amnesty gives RP failing mark
    The number of leftist activists killed rose sharply last year, the killers apparently emboldened by the perception that they are beyond the reach of the law, the London-based Amnesty International said on Tuesday.
    The Manila Times (5/24/2006 10:48:20 AM) []

    Reply

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