Friday, February 8, 2013

Moro HR group decries continuous abduction, disappearances

From the Website of MILF

Moro HR group decries continuous abduction, disappearances

February 8, 2013 News:A new Moro human rights group based in Taguig City, Metro Manila has sent this open letter dated February 4, a copy of which was furnished the Luwaran yesterday.
Speaking through a certain Ahmad Hamja, secretary general of the Hustisya-Moro, the group made this claim:  

“The still fragile peace situation in Muslim Mindanao was seriously threatened by the abduction and enforced disappearance of Sheik Basher Mursalum, an Alim or Muslim scholar, last 22 January by suspected operatives of the Philippine Center on Transnational Crime (PCTC) and Philippine National Police (PNP)  Special Action Force (SAF). Sheik Mursalum was on his way home to Brgy. Labuan, Zamboanga City.  Until now, Sheik Mursalum is still missing. The Western Mindanao police and the head of the Task Force Zamboanga have not acknowledged custody of the victim.” 

The letter alleged that two days after Sheik Mursalum’s abduction, Muin Hamja, a 40-year old fisherman of Brgy. Kumalarang, Isabela City in Basilan, was arbitrarily arrested by elements of the PNP last 24 January at around 2:30 a.m. at his residence.  The Basilan PNP has denied custody of the victim when his family went to the police camp in Isabela City.  For four days, Muin Hamja was missing until the PNP surfaced him at the Basilan Regional Trial Court (RTC) on 28 January.  He was charged with kidnapping and tagged as an Abu Sayyaf.  

He continued: “These latest waves of abduction incidents of Moro civilians in Zamboanga City and Isabela City in Basilan have a chilling effect on the Moro people despite the grand signing of the Framework Agreement on the Bangsamoro (FAB) by the GPH and the MILF on 15 October 2012 in Malacanang that seeks to establish a Bangsamoro autonomous region and achieve peace in Mindanao and the country.”

The letter further asserted: “President Aquino declared that the FAB ushers in peace in war-torn Mindanao.  He just signed the Involuntary Disappearance Act of 2012 which criminalizes enforced disappearance cases.  His new AFP Chief of Staff General Emmanuel Bautista, author of the national security plan Oplan Bayanihan, also boasts of a reformed and human rights-oriented military armed and police forces under his reign.”

However, a follow-up of the story from Mr. Hanja cannot be made, because no one was answering his contact number.

MILF Website