Military abuse of elderly in Malita scored

POURING WATER A military element from the 72nd IB is pictured here pouring water over the head of Kaido, an elderly farmer in Malita, Davao Occidental. Karapatan-SMR urged government units to take action and bring perpetrators to justice. (Screencap from video posted on MindaNews website)
POURING WATER A military element from the 72nd IB is pictured here pouring water over the head of Kaido, an elderly farmer in Malita, Davao Occidental. Karapatan-SMR urged government units to take action and bring perpetrators to justice. (Screencap from video posted on MindaNews website)

DAVAO CITY –  The human rights group Karapatan Southern Mindanao dares the 10th Infantry Division to punish soldiers and CAFGU members caught on video abusing an old man in Mailta, Davao Occidental.

The video, uploaded on Facebook and on MindaNews, showed an old farmer on his knees while he was being poured water on the head by people identified by MindaNews as members of the Philippine Army’s 72nd Infantry Battalion.

“We condemn in highest terms this inhumane humiliation and injuries inflicted by Corporal Batolbatol and three other soldiers.  Their act show the very rotten nature and disrespect of human rights by the Armed Forces of the Philippines,” said Karapatan SMR Secretary-General Hanimay Suazo.

Suazo added that the soldiers caught on video “are not fit to carry their uniform and arms and call themselves protectors of the people. Which also goes the same with their higher ups who deny and hide their atrocities.”

Reacting on the statement from the 10th ID spokesman that justice will be given on the matter, she stressed that “the guilty should be placed behind bars. Only when they have been relieved of their duties and served punishment will true justice be served.”

Suazo feared that the 10th ID may resort to pressure and pay off the victims’ family to keep the latter from pursuing the case.

“We remember the rape victim by the 68th Infantry Battalion in Bukidnon was given thousands of pesos just to settle their atrocity.  It is a meager amount compared to the trauma and indignity she encountered in her rapists’ hands,” exclaimed Suazo.

Suazo said these incidents exposes the reality of the AFP’s peace and development programs are a sham with abuses happening.

“Contrary to its claims of peace and development under Oplan Bayanihan, it is state brutality at its worst against elderly, children, and women. The AFP does not discern or choose who they want to victimize,” she said.

Suazo also asks the local government of Malita to act and protect the victims and other farmers from the military.

 

###

“Año and Baladad have to be held accountable”- Karapatan-SMR

“ANO AND BALADAD ARE ACCOUNTABLE” Hanimay Suazo, secretary-general of Karapatan-SMR, said that Maj. Gen. Eduardo Ano and Lt. Gen. Aurelio Baladad are both responsible for the deaths of the Paquibato Massacre, as they are the ones who oversee the works of the military forces stationed in this side of Mindanao. Karapatan-SMR and other groups conducted a condemnation protest at the Eastern Mindanao Command in Camp Felix Apolinario, Panacan, Davao City. (PHOTO AND CAPTION BY LAZ OLALO, KARAPATAN-SMR)

JUNE 17, 2015
PRESS RELEASE
KARAPATAN-SOUTHERN MINDANAO REGION
CONTACT PERSON: HANIMAY SUAZO
0932-198-6728

DAVAO CITY- Human rights group Karapatan-SMR demanded the accountability of ranking officials in the AFP over the civilian victims of the Paquibato Massacre.

Secretary-general Hanimay Suazo stipulated Maj. Gen. Eduardo Año of the 10th ID, to which the 69th IB is part of, and Lt. Gen. Aurelio Baladad of the Eastern Mindanao Command, who oversees the operations of the units in the mentioned area.

“As the people to whom the 69th IB looks up to, these individuals have played a role in the massacre of the Paquibato 3. It is from their orders that the soldiers in their respective act upon,” said Suazo.

Both generals, Suazo said, already have records of human rights violations long before they were operating in Mindanao.

“Ano has been implicated in the disappearance of farmer activist Jonas Burgos, while Baladad has been involved in the illegal detention and torture of the Morong 43.”

Suazo bemoans that the prediction by various concerned groups in the promotion and transfer of Baladad and Ano had come true, with the string of atrocities from the military ever since the two said officials took office in Mindanao.

“Back in 2013, the promotion of four AFP officials, Eduardo Año and Aurelio Baladad, sparked anger amongst various groups. It meant that human rights violators were given higher ground to committing more violations, and would come on unhindered in that task,” Suazo said.

“This is the result of the Aquino regime’s Oplan Bayanihan: terrorists from the AFP are promoted, and civilians massacred then falsely claimed as members of the New People’s Army. This is a clear definition of the state of impunity in the Philippines.” Suazo concluded.

###

“Investigating Duterte? Might as well investigate Año”- KARAPATAN-SMR

MAY 26, 2015
PRESS RELEASE
KARAPATAN-SOUTHERN MINDANAO REGION
CONTACT PERSON: HANIMAY SUAZO
0932-198-6728

DAVAO CITY- With the call by an international human rights group to reinvestigate Davao Mayor Rodrigo Duterte for his alleged role in summary killings in the city, a local human rights alliance echoes the long sleeping case of grave abuse by Maj. Gen. Eduardo Año, current chief of the 10th IDPA.

KARAPATAN-SMR spokesperson Hanimay Suazo says that before Año was known as 10th IDPA’s chief, his role in the abduction of farmer-activist Jonas Burgos already stank across various human rights organizations.

“Even before the current lawlessness by state-organized paramilitry forces, the military encampment in lumad schools in the countryside, to attacks against leaders of mass movements all done by the 10th IDPA in Southern Mindanao region, the name ‘Eduardo Año’ already rang deathbells in the ears of human rights groups, particularly his promotion as chief of the Intelligence Services of the AFP (ISAFP) back in 2012.”

“Año’s promotion was met with national indignation. For many, it meant that forced disappearances are set to continue, if not intensify, under the Aquino regime,” Suazo said.

According to Suazo, the trademark of the 10th IDPA under Año was the string of trumped-up charges against leaders of progressive organizations who have repeatedly voiced dissent and advocated for change.

Suazo also laments that in Año’s term , schools in rural areas that mainly serve marginalized indigenous youth, are encamped by military forces, if not fired upon.

Suazo particularly cites the paramilitary group Alamara, which has terrorized both parents and youth in Kapalong, Davao del Norte, by telling them that they are dying to slash the students of the alternative schools in the area, or to burn the schools down.

“From Talaingod to Compostela Valley, schools have become warzones. This is the case as Año continues to nod to military operations that see alternative learning centers as communist propaganda. But the truth is, these are community efforts to provide the basic social services the Aquino regime and its warfreak lapdog AFP have been unavailable to provide, due to their flawed and poor implementation of the lousily conceived Oplan Bayanihan,” Suazo said.

Suazo urged that the international human rights group Human Rights Watch (HRW) set its eyes as well to the AFP’s long list of grave abuses, particularly of the 10th IDPA under Año.

###

###