Thursday, April 5, 2012

Red fighters counter intensive SOT operations by 57th IB, 8th IB AFP troops in two separate ambush, command detonated explosive blast

From the Website of PRWC

Red fighters counter intensive SOT operations by 57th IB, 8th IB AFP troops in two separate ambush, command detonated explosive blast

Isabel Santiago
Herminio Alfonso Command, Front 53, NPA-Southern Mindanao
4 April 2012

Offensive Special Operations Team (SOT), psychological warfare activities and series of indiscriminate bombing operations by the 57th Infantry Battalion and 8th Infantry Battalion in Magpet, North Cotabato and Kibawe, Bukidnon have led to the dislocation of civilians and a host of other human rights abuses.

Acting in active defense and to counter the destructive operations under the Oplan Bayanihan, Guerilla Front 53 operations command-Herminio Alfonso Command-NPA ambushed the 57th IB forces March 29, 11 am in Sitio Bantaan, Bagumbayan, Magpet town killing one of the AFP troops and wounding another. The HAC-NPA's active defense martyred one Red fighter, Ka Nonoy. In retaliation, the AFP directed its two bomber planes and OV 10 and indiscriminately bombed civilian communities for two days in Bagumbayan, Magpet resulting to the dislocation of 122 families. It positioned its two 105 howitzer canyon behind the Bagumbayan public school and along a bridge in Kabacan river in Barangay Binay, Magpet town.

As the 57th IB-AFP troops continued with the offensive operations, on April 1, the Red fighters directed its command detonated explosive to prevent the entry of a 6x6 military truck in Purok 4, Mateo, Kidapawan city along the national highway. The NPA action temporarily prevented a further military assault.

That same day, between 5:30 to 7:00 am, the Red fighters ambushed an SOT of the 8th IB-AFP in Barangay Sampaguita, Kibawe town, Bukidnon, killing two AFP troops. After the battle, the AFP dropped eight bombs, one civilian, Jenis Maguate was wounded on the face and back. The civilian's cow and carabao were hit and killed with the bombing assault.

To justify its offensive bombing and ground operations in conditioning the minds of the public, the AFP spread the wild rumor of the presence of Ka Parago of the 1st Pulang Bagani Company-NPA in the North Cotabato-Bukidnon range. The military operations was also an act of desperation to pursue the NPA for the capital punishment it imposed on Patrick Wineger, a prized possession of the AFP who masterminded the killing of beloved Italian missionary and people's advocate Fr. Fausto "Pops" Tentorio.

602nd Brigade Commander Col. Cesar Sedillo and 57th IB Civil Military Operations chief Lt. Manuel Gatus bared their stark ignorance when they immediately condemned the command detonated explosive blast as a violation to the international humanitarian law. The command-detonated explosives of the type used by the NPA are not covered by the Mine Ban Treaty nor do they violate international laws governing armed conflicts. The NPA only uses command-detonated explosives against the intruding forces of the AFP/PNP. Command-detonated explosives are anti-personnel and anti-tank mines that fundamentally differ from mines that are designed to be exploded
by the presence, proximity or contact of a person which are specifically covered by the 1997 Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti-Personnel Mines and Their Destruction.

The AFP further attempts to score a propaganda point and fails miserably when it diverts its own abusive and offensive military operations that has left a string of extra-judicial killings of civilians like Fr. Tentorio and Ramon Batoy, and the psychological warfare against civilian peasants and indigenous peoples in North Cotabato and Bukidnon provinces. It attempts to deodorize its rotten self by extending civilian social services to the victims of its military operations.

All the more, the NPA is on a moral high ground in actively defending the civilians from intruding military forces by acting against legitimate military targets and mounting offensive military actions against the abusive AFP.

(Sgd.) Isabel Santiago
Herminio Alfonso Command
Guerilla Front 53 Operations Command
New People's Army-Southern Mindanao