Monday, June 17, 2019

NDF/Sison: Duterte is exposed as a traitor and paid agent of China

Jose Maria Sison propaganda statement posted to the National Democratic Front Philippines (MDFP or NDF) Website (Jun 17, 2019): Duterte is exposed as a traitor and paid agent of China

By Jose Maria Sison
NDFP Chief Political Consultant
June 17, 2019

Photo: AFP/Ted Aljibe

Supreme Court Senior Associate Justice Antonio is legally, politically and morally correct in demanding that the Philippines and the Duterte regime take a strong stand against China’s aggressive act and demand compensation and punishment for the captain and crew of the vessel that rammed the Filipino fishing vessel, F/B Gemvir 1.

The failure of Duterte himself to make the required strong stand against the aggressive act and to demand compensation and punishment from the criminal rammers exposes him as a traitor and paid agent of China and takes the lid off a whole barrel of treasonous crimes that Duterte has committed in betrayal of the national sovereignty and national patrimony of the Filipino people.

As I have long pointed out, Duterte and his close relatives and high subalterns have privately benefited from commissions on high-interest Chinese loans and overpriced infrastructure projects at the official level and at the same time from the massive smuggling and distribution of illegal drugs by the Chinese criminal triads at the unofficial level.

Duterte is engaged in double puppetry. For the purpose of keeping the loyalty of the US-lining military and police officers, he retains all the treaties, agreements and arrangements that make US imperialism the most dominant power in the Philippines. At the same time, he serves as a double traitor focused on the quick and secret income from commissions by Chinese corporations and payoffs by the Chinese criminal triads.

While Duterte and his ruling clique profit enormously from their Chinese connections, they sell out to China the sovereign rights of the Filipino people over the West Philippine Sea and and its marine and mineral resources and make the Philippines a debt colony of China through high-interest loans and overpriced infrastructure projects.

Thus, they do not make any demand for China to vacate the artificial islands it has built and militarized in the exclusive economic zone of the Philippines, to pay rent for occupancy of those islands and to pay compensation for the damage and destruction of the marine environment. The Duterte regime is traitorous and corrupt. It is shamelessly subservient to Chinese imperialism.###

WESTMINCOM: Military officer donned new rank by WestMinCom chief

Posted to the Western Mindanao Command (WESTMINCOM) Website (Jun 17, 2019): Military officer donned new rank by WestMinCom chief

A military officer of the Western Mindanao Command received his new insignia in a ceremony held in Zamboanga City this morning, June 17.

Lieutenant General Arnel Dela Vega, WestMinCom chief, donned the new rank to Major Oliver Macansantos, administrative officer of the Assistant Chief of Unified Command Staff for Operations of the WestMinCom.

The WestMinCom chief also gave tokens to the birthday celebrators during the flag-raising held in Camp Navarro, Calarian at 7am today.

EASTMINCOM: RP-RI to Enhance Border Security

Posted to the Eastern Mindanao Command (EASTMINCOM) Website (Jun 17, 2019): RP-RI to Enhance Border Security

NSFA, Panacan, Davao City - Lt. Gen. Felimon T. Santos Jr., Commander Eastern Mindanao Command and Honorable Dicky Fabrian the new Consul General of Indonesia in Davao City agreed to continuously enhance the border security of the two countries along the Celebes Sea to prevent terrorism, sea and maritime crimes to transpire in the said area.

This was briefly discussed during the courtesy call of Consul General Fabrian to Lt. Gen. Santos Jr., at Headquarters, Eastern Mindanao Command, Naval Station Felix Apolinario, Panacan, Davao City on June 17, 2019.

The two leaders initially discussed the possible improvement of the Border Crossing Stations situated in Balut, Saranggani, Davao Occidental and Tibanban, Governor Generoso, Davao Oriental as part of the measure of strengthening border security,

They further talked on the ways and possibilities of enhancing the regular conduct of coordinated patrols between the two countries in the border as stated in the 1975 RP-RI Border Agreement.

It can be recalled that the two Countries increased the frequency of the conduct of coordinated patrol for this year from two legs to four legs wherein the 10-day first leg was conducted from May 1-10, 2019, while the second leg is expected to kick off on the second week of July 2019.

Likewise, during the call, Consul General Fabrian extends and opens his invitation to soldiers who are interested to learn Bahasa language and to the Indo Trade, Tourism and Food Expo in Davao City on July 12-14, 2019, Lt. Gen Santos in return expressed his support to the different activities of the Consulate in Eastern Mindanao.

"Rest assure of the support of Eastern Mindanao Command not only in securing our common border but also in all socio-economic activities of your consulate and Indonesian Government benefitting the Indo Nationals in Eastern Mindanao and those that will strengthen the bilateral relation of our countries." Lt. Gen Santos said.

Source: Public Information Office, Eastern Mindanao Command

NPA claims killing of ‘cop informant’

From the Visayan Daily Star (Jun 17, 2019): NPA claims killing of ‘cop informant’

The New People’s Army Leonardo Panaligan Command has issued a statement claiming responsibility for the death of an alleged police informant on June 6 in Brgy. Buenavista, Guihulngan City, Negros Oriental.

Ka JB Regalado, Leonardo Panaligan spokesperson, alleged that the victim Rosemar Melancolico was a police asset supervised by a certain PNP Fermin Jacobe in Guihulngan.

Regalado further linked Melancolico to the Oplan Sauron 1 campaign of the PNP in Brgy. Buenavista, Guihulngan City in Dec. 27, 2018, as well as two murder incidents and illegal drug activities.

He also said that the killing of Melancolico was successfully carried out by members of the NPA Special Partisan Unit.

Investigations by the Guihulngan City Police station showed that three others persons, who were attending a wake in front of the Bueavista barangay hall, were also injured, when Melancolico was shot by six armed men.

Army sees leadership changes

From the Visayan Daily Star )Jun 19, 2019): Army sees leadership changes

The arrival of more troops in Negros also led to changes of leadership among the newly-arrived 11th Infantry Battalion in Negros Oriental, and 47th Infantry Battalion, that are both under the supervision of the Army’s 302nd Infantry Brigade.

Lt. Col. Ramir Redosendo is the new commander of the 11th Infantry Battalion, the troopers of which are presently undergoing re-orientation training at Camp Leon Kilat in Tanjay City, Negros Oriental.

Redosendo, former 47IB commander in Bohol, swapped positions with Lt. Col. Carlo Ferrer, whom he succeeded as 11IB commander, Brig. Gen. Ignacio Madriaga, 302nd Infantry Brigade commander, yesterday said.

The 302nd Infantry Brigade headquarters was returned to Negros Oriental, after more than two years in Bohol.

As soon as the 11IB troopers have completed their re-orientation on mission profile at Camp Leon Kilat, they will be deployed in still to be determined areas in Negros Oriental, Madriaga said.

The return of 11IB to Negros brought to five the number of Army infantry battalions deployed in the island.

The deployment of more Army soldiers to Negros was in compliance with the order of President Rodrigo Duterte for state security forces to address violent activities of the New People’s Army, and accelerate the development of the island.

Madriaga said the Armed Forces of the Philippines is now refocusing its security efforts and peace and development campaign in Negros.

It will be a combined effort, that includes combat operations, clearing of insurgency-affected barangays, and pursuing localized peace talks, he added.

Philippines: Mindanao Displacement Dashboard, April 2019 - Issue No. 57

Posted to the Relief Web (Jun 6, 2019): Philippines: Mindanao Displacement Dashboard, April 2019 - Issue No. 57

REPORT from UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Protection Cluster
Published on 06 Jun 2019 —View Original 

Download PDF (6.09 MB)


In April 2019, a total number of 1,080 families (4,619 individuals) were displaced in Mindanao due to armed conflict (1,969 individuals), clan feuds (712 individuals), and crimes and violence (1,938 individuals). Out of 4,619 individuals displaced throughout the month, 96% have returned to their homes at the end of April, leaving 4% (200 individuals) still displaced at the end of the reporting period.

As of the 30th of April, a total number of 27,143 families (132,586 individuals) are currently displaced in Mindanao. Those displaced can be classified into three main groups, depending on the length of displacement:

Group A: 60 families (200 individuals) remain displaced out of 1,080 families in the course of April;

Group B: 11,040 families (53,836 individuals) remain protractedly displaced for more than 30 but less than 180 days; and

Group C: 16,043 families (78,550 individuals) remain protractedly displaced for more than 180 days. Those classified under Group C are concentrated in four main areas:

Lanao Del Sur & Lanao Del Nortre: 14,012 families (68,378 individuals) still displaced due to Marwari siege in May 2017.

Northern Mindanao: 1,243 families (6,261 individuals) still displaced due to Severe Thunder Storm Vinta (Temblin) in December 2017

Zamboanga City: 546 families (2,724 individuals) still displaced due to Zamboanga siege in 2013.

Eastern Mindanao: 242 families (1,187 individuals) still displaced due to armed conflict between AFP and NPA in February 2018.


1,080 Families

4,619 Individuals


Since January to April 2019

9 Persons Dead

13 Persons Injured

US awards micro-grants for rehabilitation of Marawi, other areas

From the Business World (Jun 17, 2019): US awards micro-grants for rehabilitation of Marawi, other areas

THE US government has awarded 75 micro-grants to communities and business owners displaced from Marawi, a statement Monday by the US Embassy said. 

According to the statement, Acting Mission Director Patrick Wesner of the US Agency for International Development (USAID) and Field Office Manager and Assistant Secretary Felix Castro of Task Force Bangon Marawi visited Marawi and Iligan on June 11 for the community grants handover events. 

“The micro-grants, each valued at P260,000, will assist displaced families as they restart their livelihoods and small businesses, and will help host communities build small scale infrastructure and convene community events critical to the recovery,” the statement said, adding that the micro-grants and training program are part of USAID’s three-year, P1.35-billion Marawi Response Project, “which supports the economic recovery and social cohesion of displaced and host communities in Marawi, Lanao Del Sur, Lanao Del Norte and Iligan.” 

The micro-grants in Iligan City were awarded in collaboration with the Bangon Marawi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BMCCI), an association of entrepreneurs displaced from the most affected area of Marawi.

What’s Behind the First Sulu Sea Trilateral Land Exercise?

From The Diplomat (Jun 17, 2019): What’s Behind the First Sulu Sea Trilateral Land Exercise? (By Dr. Prashanth Parameswaran)

A key minilateral arrangement looks to be closer to taking another long-mulled step forward.

What’s Behind the First Sulu Sea Trilateral Land Exercise?

A picture from the previous launch of joint trilateral air patrols at Subang military airbase in Petaling Jaya, Malaysia, Thursday, Oct. 12, 2017. (AP Photo/Vincent Thian)  Image Credit: AP Photo

Last week, Indonesia’s defense minister said that Indonesia, Malaysia, and the Philippines planned on holding a joint land patrol exercise next month. The development, which has been a long-mulled step within trilateral collaboration between the three countries which has taken shape in recent years, deserves emphasis as part of ongoing minilateral security collaboration in Southeast Asia.

As I have noted before in these pages and elsewhere, one of the key developments in minilateral collaboration in Southeast Asia in recent years has been the advancement of trilateral cooperation between Indonesia, Malaysia, and the Philippines. Following intensifying discussions after a spate of kidnappings of nationals by militant groups in mid-2016, collaboration took shape as the Trilateral Cooperative Agreement (TCA) in 2017 and into 2018, with maritime and air patrols and the setting up of hubs for operations in each country.

One of the aspects that had been closely watched with respect to the TCA’s expansion had been the addition of a ground component to complement the maritime and air elements where collaboration had been previously forged. Through 2018, officials had indicated amid the holding of trilateral meetings that there was an intention to build out the land component of cooperation in addition to the air and sea. And as with previous iterations, the TCA was in the spotlight again at this year’s Shangri-La Dialogue (SLD) in Singapore a few weeks ago, where Indonesian Defense Minister Ryamizard Ryacudu indicated that trilateral collaboration was poised to enter a new phase with the holding of a joint ground exercise, and the defense ministers from the three countries also met on the sidelines of the summit in discussions that touched on this as well.

This week, this aspect of ongoing trilateral collaboration between the three countries was in the headlines again when Indonesia confirmed that the three countries have indeed agreed to conduct a month-long joint land exercise in the coming months in Tarakan in North Kalimantan. In remarks reported in local and international media outlets, Ryacudu indicated on June 12 that the exercise would be designed to boost joint collaboration in land border areas to address a wide range of transnational challenges, with a particular focus on terrorism with continuing fears about Islamic State-linked militants in the region.

In terms of details of the upcoming exercise, The Jakarta Post, on June 17, quoted ministry spokesperson Totok Sugiharto as saying that the exercise, expected to be held next month, is expected to see each country deploying a company of troops and a few observers. The drills are expected to include training on areas such as shooting and close-range combat, with a focus on familiarizing each side with their capabilities as well as the terrain for potentially more complex and involved engagements further down the line.

Specifics still remain unclear on the operationalization of the drills as well as what they mean for the future development of trilateral Sulu Sea patrols more generally. Details have not been confirmed by all three sides formally, including the exact timing of the exercise, specific personnel numbers, and the location. And while there has been talk about more robust future measures including deploying a joint land force into areas such as the southern Philippines, Ryacudu has been more cautious in his recent statements, noting that the process would proceed incrementally, with the involvement of other actors including the foreign ministries as well as a step-by-step approach to the conduct of drills to allow for the working out of specifics that would manage some of the challenges that remain.

Nonetheless, the development of the ground component of trilateral collaboration between the three countries in this realm deserves emphasis. Talk of the exercise is the latest in a series of incremental, long-mulled steps in what is one of the more promising manifestations of Southeast Asian minilateral security collaboration, whatever the limitations and challenges that remain. Seen from that perspective, how the three countries and the wider region continue to develop this mechanism will continue to be significant to monitor in the coming months and years.

[Dr. Prashanth Parameswaran is Senior Editor at The Diplomat based in Washington, D.C., where he produces analysis on Southeast Asian political and security issues, Asian defense affairs, and U.S. foreign policy in the Asia-Pacific. Previously, he worked on Asian affairs at several think tanks, including the Center for Strategic and International Studies. He holds a PhD and an MA in international relations from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University, and a BA in foreign affairs and peace and conflict studies from the University of Virginia.]

Former Bayan Muna head gunned down

From the Manila Times (Jun 17, 2019): Former Bayan Muna head gunned down

LEGAZPI CITY: Three Bicolano activists, including a former Bayan Muna regional head, were killed in a span of a few days in the provinces of Camarines Sur and Sorsogon after the midterm polls here.

Maria Luisa Calubaquib, Philippine National Police Bicol region spokesman, said Neptali Morada, 40, was gunned down by still unidentified gunmen at San Isidro village in Naga City at 7:30 a.m. on Monday while driving his motorcycle.

Calubaquib said Morada was on his way to the provincial capitol of Camarines Sur in Pili, where he was employed as a staff of former vice governor Fortunato Peña, when he was shot by suspects aboard a white vehicle.

Morada also served as the Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (Bayan) campaign committee head in Camarines Sur and thw regional coordinator of Bayan Muna in Bicol.

Vince Casilihan, Bayan-Bicol information officer, said Morada left Bayan in 2000 to work for Peña.

The killing of Morada took place a few hours before Sorsogon Bishop Arturo Bastes officiated and offered Mass for the untimely deaths of human rights activists Ryan Hubilla and Nelly Bagasala.Hubilla and Bagasala, staffers of the human rights group Karapatan, were repeatedly gunned down in a broad daylight on Saturday by still unidentified men while paying for their tricycle fare in Sorsogon City.

Meanwhile, a high-ranking official of the New People’s Army (NPA) was killed at Purok 5, Barangay Incarizan, Magallanes town in Sorsogon a few days ago.

Maj. Anthony Aguilar, spokesman of the Army’s 9th Infantry Division, said Edwin Dematera, alias “Dupax,” deputy secretary of Larangan 2, Komiteng Probinsiya 3 of the NPA, was killed in a three-minute encounter with government troops.

Dematera, according to Aguilar, was facing a warrant of arrest for murder and frustrated murder charges.

The Bicol region was known as a rebels’ lair in the past decades, but their numbers dwindled in early 2000, according to military reports.

The leftist groups Karapatan, Bayan and Bayan Muna were being tagged by government authorities as supporters of the 50-decade communist movement in the country, which included the Communist Party of the Philippines, NPA and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines.

Philippine Militant Suspects Linked to Marawi Siege Caught Near Manila

From BenarNews (Jun 17, 2019): Philippine Militant Suspects Linked to Marawi Siege Caught Near Manila

Government soldiers survey the area inside the former main battle zone in Marawi, southern Philippines, May 2019.

Government soldiers survey the area inside the former main battle zone in Marawi, southern Philippines, May 2019.

Three suspected militants, including two men allegedly involved in the Islamic State-linked takeover of Marawi city in the southern Philippines in 2017, were arrested in separate operations over the weekend, authorities said Monday.

In Quezon City near Manila, police intelligence agents caught Arnel Cabintoy (alias Abu Mus’ab) and Feliciano Sulayao (alias Abu Muslim) during an operation on Saturday, national police chief Gen. Oscar Albayalde said. He did not divulge other details but said both suspects were Muslim converts and operatives of Daulah Islamiyah, a local name for the Islamic State (IS) extremist group.

“I am pleased to announce the capture of terrorist personalities wanted by the law for involvement in the infamous Marawi siege of 2017,” Albayalde said.

“Although there is no direct evidence linking them to any terrorist activity in metro Manila, an investigation is underway to uncover the circumstances surrounding their presence in the city to possibly identify the persons who provided them sanctuary,” he added.

The two suspects were said to be under the command of Hatib Hajan Sawadjaan, a senior leader of the Abu Sayyaf Group. Sawadjaan inherited the top IS post in the Philippines after Isnilon Hapilon, the Islamic State chief in the region, was killed toward the end of the five-month siege of Marawi, as government troops battled to wrest the city from militant control.

Philippine authorities have blamed Abu Sayyaf, a small group of Islamic fighters based in the south, for a rash of violence across the Mindanao region, including kidnappings and beheadings.

Cabintoy and Sulayao, Albayalde said, were among dozens of names on a list of people wanted in connection with the Marawi siege, and which was signed by Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana, the administrator of martial law that remains in effect across the southern Philippines.

“Both suspects yielded blasting caps and grenades when arrested. They have been presented before state prosecutors for inquest proceedings for illegal possession of explosives,” Albayalde said.

Little is known about Sawadjaan, but Philippine police had pointed to him as the mastermind of a suicide bombing that killed 23 people at a church on southern Jolo island in January 2019. Police allege that Sawadjaan had deployed an Indonesian couple for a suicide mission in the attack, although authorities in Jakarta have discredited that angle.

Meanwhile in southern General Santos city, police said they had arrested Sabaina Sahak, the widow of Basser Sahak, a ranking leader of Ansar al-Khilafah Philippines, an IS-linked group, during an operation in the area on Saturday. Officials have blamed this local group for a bomb attack that injured eight people at a clinic in General Santos last September.

Police said Sabaina Sahak was among suspects charged in connection with the bombing. Her husband, Basser, was killed during a police operation in southern Sarangani province in October 2018.

Authorities also tagged Sabaina Sahak as a finance and operations officer for AKP. Its leader, Mohammad Jaafar Maguid (alias Commander Tokboy), was killed in an encounter with security forces in January 2017.

Sayyaf member spent 20 years in Sabah

From the Daily Express (Jun 17, 2019): Sayyaf member spent 20 years in Sabah

KOTA KINABALU: One of the six suspected militants from the Islamic State-linked Abu Sayyaf group arrested by military operatives in two separate operations in the Philippines last month lived in Sabah for more than two decades and was involved in human trafficking and smuggling weapons.

The six identified as Azmier Maalum, Amar Assan, Musa Tahil Sampang, Jamil Ibrahim, Yong Aming and Majuk Tahil Amil were suspected of involvement in kidnapping, ambushes, bomb attacks and recruitment.

The Philippine National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) presented the six – two captured in Taguig, one in Bataan and three in Zamboanga City on May 16 and 20 – to the media in Manila.

“The six were suspected of involvement in kidnapping, ambushes, bomb attacks and recruitment,” NBI spokesman Ferdinand Lavin said during the briefing.

He said the arrest stemmed from intelligence reports.

Lavin added that five were behind the kidnap of 50 workers from a plantation at Tam-Awan in Basilan province in 2001, while the sixth detainee allegedly took part in the abduction of Jehovah’s Witnesses in Sulu Province’s Patikul in 2002.

“The joint operations were conducted by operatives from the NBI, the Philippine Navy (PN) and the Philippine National Police (PNP),” he said.

The PNP said Ibrahim had lived in Sabah for 26 years and was in charge of smuggling guns and people from Mindanao.

Police authorities said they raided hideouts days after the killing of a Dutch wildlife photographer, Ewold Horn, on May 31, when insurgents holding the 59-year-old hostage clashed with government security forces in restive southern Philippines.

Horn was the first Western captive killed by Abu Sayyaf since the group executed two Canadians and a German in 2016.

“He (Ibrahim) is a reliable boatman,” the NBI also claimed, adding the militant’s fighters were decreasing so they had to recruit more for Mindanao.

In April, police also arrested an Abu Sayyaf member working as a security guard in metro Manila.

Aldemar Murih Saiyari was accused of kidnapping and had been employed as a guard using a fake licence.

The terrorist organisation continues to be a problem for Malaysia as well, with the authorities saying the threat remains high.

Inspector-General of Police Datuk Seri Abdul Hamid Bador has said Sabah’s proximity to the Philippines leaves it vulnerable, with Sulu only less than an hour’s boat ride away.

Founded in the early 1990s, Abu Sayyaf has carried out a number of kidnappings, bombings and beheadings in the southern Philippines over the past decade.

The militants are notorious for abducting foreigners and have carried out several other atrocities in the region this year, including a Sulu cathedral bombing in January that left 23 dead and more than 100 injured.

In July last year, they detonated a car bomb at a military checkpoint in Basilan province, killing 11.

The arrest of the six suspects is a sign of how the terrorist network continues to trouble Southeast Asia even as its influence wanes in the Middle East.

Meanwhile, Regional military spokesman Colonel Gerry Besana said “militants were exploiting poverty and using offers of money and scholarship grants to radicalise and recruit new members.”

According to academic Ramon Beleno III, head of political science and history at Ateneo de Davao University, reports of militants recruiting new fighters in urban centres such as Manila were worrying and could increase their capacity to launch attacks.

“This (arrest of Abu Sayyaf working as security guard) is a cause for concern since security guards are our frontline defence – at railway stations, airports and bus depots.

“The police need to intensify their intelligence operations,” Beleno stressed.

The number of hostages currently being held by Abu Sayyaf is unclear.

The military says there is none but the Philippine National Police claim two Vietnamese and four Filipinos remain unaccounted for.

The military deployed a battalion to Sulu last week in pursuit of Abu Sayyaf, bringing the total number of troops in the province to more than 10,000.

Philippine Air Force received P2B funding for Marawi siege, COA says

From GMA News Online (Jun 17, 2019): Philippine Air Force received P2B funding for Marawi siege, COA says

The Philippine Air Force (PAF) has received more than P2 billion from the government for the purchase of air ammunition and various munitions and the replenishment of supplies used against the Maute Group during the five-month combat operations in Marawi City in 2017, according to the report of the Commission on Audit (COA).

The COA said the Department of Budget and Management released P2.039 billion for the PAF in 2017 and 2018 "to support the procurement of air munitions, special munitions, and projected aircraft requirements and to replenish supplies."

As of December 31, 2018, the COA said the Air Force has used only P1.49 billion of its total budget, while the PAF Command told the commission that it will utilize the remaining P547 million this year.

The bulk of the expenses, or around P824 million, went to the purchase of air munitions and other military supplies, followed by P303.9 million worth of supplies and materials inventory.

State auditors said the PAF, which served as the "aerial warfare service branch" of the military, also received P312,000 from the Philippine Army as incentives to two female PAF personnel deployed during the siege.

The COA did not cite any adverse findings in its annual audit.

"There are no significant findings noted in the audit of utilization of Marawi funds," it said.

Due from PITC

Meanwhile, the COA flagged the P3.23-million difference in the balance of the Philippine International Trading Corporation (PITC) to the PAF worth P537.376 million and its delay in the delivery of P193 million worth of air ammunition.

The COA said the discrepancy came from the expected delivery of athletic rubber shoes, which the PITC has yet to confirm as of February 13, 2019.

The PAF has also not yet received P193 million worth of MK-82 Low Drag General Purpose Bombs with accessories and rockets from PITC, the audit said. It said this was purchased through a negotiated procurement via foreign military sales.

The commission said the lack of a cost-benefit analysis from the PAF caused the military to purchase 960 MK-82 bombs at a higher price, saying the US government offered a cheaper product which could have saved the military P16.13 million.

"The difference/potential savings could have been utilized to procure additional air ammunition or other operational requirements had the agency continued the procurement from US government and exercised the necessary due diligence," the COA said.

The COA urged PAF management to reconcile the discrepancies with PITC and demand the immediate delivery of its dues.

In its comment, the PAF said the PITC had settled the discrepancy on March 1. It also agreed to adhere to the other recommendations in the audit.

Behave! Court warns Misuari against violating conditions of Middle East travel

From Politiko Mindanao (Jun 17, 2019): Behave! Court warns Misuari against violating conditions of Middle East travel
Former Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) governor Nur Misuari has been warned by the Sandiganbayan 3rd Division not to violate again the travel conditions it set.

The anti-graft court had earlier allowed the founding chairman of the Moro National LIberation Front (MNLF) to travel to the Middle East last March to attend meetings of Islamic states.

However, among the conditions that were set, the court directed Misuari to present himself before the clerk of court within five days of his arrival.

Misuari explained in a manifestation to the court that he was supposed to come on March 19 but had a meeting with President Rodrigo Duterte as well as met with his field commanders and advisers concerning the Mindanao peace situation.

In a resolution, the court said it “finds the reasons forwarded by accused-movant Misuari in support of his non-compliance to be valid and accepted, bearing that this is the first time that accused-movant Misuari travelled outside the Philippines.”

“However, it must be emphasized that this leniency should not be interpreted as a relaxation of the conditions that may be imposed for foreign travels of accused-movant Misuari in the future,” it stressed.

Misuari is facing before the court two counts of graft and two counts of malversation through falsification.

Under the charges, he is accused of being allegedly involved inanomalous purchase of educational materials from 2000 to 2001 when he was still ARMM governor.

Army seizes arms cache, supply belonging to NPA

From the Mindanao Times (Jun 18, 2019): Army seizes arms cache, supply belonging to NPA

Several firearms and improvised explosive devices were discovered by troops of the 71st Infantry Battalion in Sitio Babasal, Barangay Manipongol, Maco, Davao de Oro (Compostela Valley) on Sunday.

Lt. Col. Esteveyn E. Ducusin, commanding officer of the 71st Infantry Battalion, said they directed the troops to go after the communist rebels after receiving information regarding their presence in the community.

However, they didn’t find any rebels when they went to the area.

However, troops under 1Lt. Randy Coloma discovered an enemy encampment and recovered one Cal. 38 with 13 live ammunition; two improvised shotguns with four ammunition; two cal .22 rifles; 13 live ammunition of Ctg 5.56 mm; 16 live ammunition of 7.62 mm; one improvices explosive devices; 12 pieces of blasting caps; two magazines for an M16 rifle; three magazines of cal .45 pistol; one magazine of 9mm with six live ammunition, one set of detonating battery; four 1.5V dry cell battery; 17 bottles of butane; one analogue multi-tester; and one chainsaw.

The arms cache and supply were reportedly left behind by the Guerilla Front 2, Sub-Regional Command 2, Southern Mindanao Regional Command.

“We have been receiving information from concerned citizens of the neighboring Sitios near the encampments,” he said.

Ducusin said this only proves that the communities themselves are turning their backs on the rebels because they have seen the efforts of the government to improve their lives.

59 bombs disposed

From the Mindanao Times (Jun 18, 2019): 59 bombs disposed

The soldiers of the 30th Infantry Battalion and Explosives Ordnance Disposal (EOD) team in Surigao del Norte supervised the disposal of six pieces of unexploded ordnance (UXOs) and 53 improvised explosive devices on Saturday, June 15.

1Lt. Ken Enciso, the Civil-Military Operations officer of the 30th IB, said the bombs were recovered from 2013 to 2019 after different encounters with the communist guerrillas. They were turned over by the different elements, police officers, and civilians for to the Army for safekeeping.

The Army disposed of the following: two UXOs of 105mm howitzer; two UXOs of 60mm mortar; one rifle grenade, one hand grenade, one gallon IED, 10 PVC pipe bombs, 21 GI pipe bombs, 12 dual blasting caps, and four directional IED mines.

The UXO refers to are bombs that did not explode but still pose a risk to civilians.

“UXOs and IEDs are hazardous items, for the safety of everyone, we called the EOD team for proper disposal of the said UXOs and IEDs to prevent damage to life and property, after which we immediately coordinated for a safe place to dispose it away from the civilian populace, ” Lt Col. Allen Raymund C. Tomas, commanding officer of the 30th IB, said.

“I call on the attention of all Surigaonons, if ever you have seen UXOs and IEDs, please report immediately to the nearest PNP or Army station so we can call EOD experts to handle the situation to prevent loss of life and damage,” Tomas said.

Photo: Lumads Meet US Ambassador

From MindaNews (Jun 17, 2019): Photo: Lumads Meet US Ambassador

US Ambassador to the Philippines Sung Kim (2nd frm right) is greeted by Lumads at the Philippine Eagle Center during Kim's visit to the conservation center in Davao City on 17 June 2019. MindaNews photo by MANMAN DEJETO

9th ID sets up Media Operations Center, strengthens media relations

From the Philippine Information Agency (Jun 17, 2019): 9th ID sets up Media Operations Center, strengthens media relations

9ID Commander MGen. Fernando T. Trinidad AFP (right) and 9ID Spokesperson Col. Ferozaldo Paul T. Regencia GSC (INF) PA (left) led the ribbon-cutting during the blessing of the 9ID Media Operation Center (MOC), June 13, 2019, Camp Elias Angeles, San Jose, Pili, Camarines Sur. (JRM-PIA5/Camarines Sur)

PILI, CAMARINES SUR (PIA) – A strong believer in the immense influence of communication to empower the community, 9th ID Commander MGEN Fernando T. Trinidad made sure that the Spear troopers and the media will not be left behind in its quest to provide factual and up-to-date information to the people it pledged to serve.

Thus, on Thursday, June 13, members of the media representing various radio, print and television outlets from the different provinces in the Bicol Region were invited to grace the blessing and inauguration of the 9th ID Media Operations Center right in the vast ground of Camp Elias Angeles, Cadlan, here.

“This technological advancement will provide greater access to new information to the general public. However, it can cause serious challenges in determining the accuracy and the integrity of data and information. This is the main reason why the 9th infantry Spear division initiated the creation of its media operation center,” MGen Trinidad conveyed to the media.

The 9th ID Commander also cited that the establishment of the communication facility is to “innovate the 9th ID’s public affairs activities by means of providing accurate and timely information to Bicolanos, especially to our Spear Troopers through the use social media.”

“Perhaps, it is best that we shy away from the creation of fake news. As media personalities, I believe that your role is to verify and confirm the information that you are giving to the public, and the 9th ID firmly believe that you are all responsible news entities,” Trinidad added.

MGEN Trinidad further stressed that the said project also supports the intent of President Rodrigo Duterte and the Philippine Army’s Commanding General to intensify the relevance of the Philippine Army groups and send messages of peace by “culminating the information garnered through the dissemination of relevant information that would foster peace, security and development in the region.”

9ID Commander MGEN Fernando T. Trinidad AFP (seated, 2nd from left) and 9ID Spokesperson COL Ferozaldo Paul T. Regencia GSC (INF) PA (seated, far right) meets the press after the blessing of the 9ID Media Operation Center (MOC) held on June 13, 2019 at Camp Elias Angeles, San Jose, Pili, Camarines Sur. (JRM-PIA5/Camarines Sur)

9th ID Assistant Division Commander Col. Ferozaldo Paul T. Regencia also thanked the Division Public Affairs Office (DPAO) under Capt. Joash Pramis then, who have initially brought the idea of coming up with a media operations center which will serve as the communication center of all 9th ID affairs, which will provide easy access to the media.

“As i was saying, as I was taking to our Commander, I could not do this without the help also of our DPAO, Capt. Pramis and Acting DPAO right now is Maj. Aguilar and his people. So i was telling our commander that right now, DPAO is also very strong entity, a very strong arm of the 9th ID with regards with our media relations. We also thank them for helping out in this endeavour so our media operation center will be a center piece of our relationship as what our commander have said earlier,” Regencia said.

The 9th ID Media Operations Center is equipped with basic communication equipment, air-conditioned rooms for audio recording and taping, individual media work area, a ready internet for immediate news transmission and a free-flowing coffee for those who like to do their media works inside the camp.

Nueva Ecija town village chief shot dead

From the Philippine News Agency (Jun 17, 2019): Nueva Ecija town village chief shot dead

TALAVERA, Nueva Ecija -- A 61-year-old village chief in this progressive municipality was killed by a still unidentified gunman at around 10:40 p.m. Sunday.

Col. Alexie Desamito, town police chief, on Monday identified the victim as Arniel Bernardo, chair of Barangay San Ricardo here.

“He was riding a bicycle 'when successively shot' by the suspect/s upon reaching the gate of his residence,” he said.

The village chief died on the spot.

Desamito said a follow-up investigation on the killing is now being conducted.

"The possible motive of the killing has yet to be established," the town police chief said.

Civilians tips lead to recovery of NPA mortar, ammo in N. Ecija

From the Philippine News Agency (Jun 17, 2019): Civilians tips lead to recovery of NPA mortar, ammo in N. Ecija

RECOVERED. The various ammunition and personal belongings believed to be from members of the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People's Army (CPP-NPA), which the military and police recovered in an abandoned lair in Barangay Calabasa in Gabaldon, Nueva Ecija on Sunday (June 16, 2019). The recovery was the result of operation conducted by authorities after receiving information from civilians. (Photo courtesy of the 1st Provincial Mobile Force Company/Nueva Ecija Police Provincial Office)

BALER, Aurora — Military and police troops recovered ammunition and leftist paraphernalia in a lair abandoned by alleged members of the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army (CPP-NPA) in Barangay Calabasa, Gabaldon town in Nueva Ecija.

The recovery was the result of joint operations conducted Sunday by the Philippine Army’s 91st Infantry “Sinagtala” Battalion, 1st Provincial Mobile Force Company/Nueva Ecija Police Provincial Office (PMFC-NEPPO), and intelligence operatives, after receiving information from civilian tipsters.

Police Lt. Col. Dennis Wenceslao, commander of the 1st PMFC-NEPPO, said the recovered firearms and personal belongings of the rebels include 22 pieces of M203 grenade launcher ammunition, 90 pieces of 60-caliber ammunition, two pieces of empty shell of M203 grenade launcher, one piece of 81 mm mortar, one magazine assembly of AK47, a tactical bandolier vest, improvised explosive device (IED) cord, and a backpack.

Wenceslao attributed the discovery to the civilian informants, who have been providing the troops with vital information.

“This is also part of our internal security operation,” he added.

The recovered items are presently under the custody of the 1st PMFC-NEPPO.

The CPP-NPA, which has been waging a decades-long war against the government, is considered a terrorist organization by the Philippines, the United States and the European Union.

2 alleged Dawlah Islamiya members nabbed in QC

From the Philippine News Agency (Jun 17, 2019): 2 alleged Dawlah Islamiya members nabbed in QC

Two alleged members of Dawlah Islamiya terrorist group were arrested in an operation in Quezon City over the weekend.

Philippine National Police chief Gen. Oscar Albayalde
identified the suspects as Arnel Cabintoy alias Abu Musab, native of barangay Nagtupakan, Lagangilang, Abra and Feliciano Sulayao alias Abu Muslim, native of Barangay Cagripa, Calbayog City, Northern Samar.

Both suspects yielded blasting caps and grenades when arrested in Tandang Sora last Saturday.

The two have undergone inquest proceedings for illegal possession of explosives.

Albayalde said there is no direct evidence yet that links the suspects to any terrorist activity in Metro Manila.

“Although there is no direct evidence linking them to any terrorist activity in Metro Manila, an investigation is underway to uncover the circumstances surrounding their presence in the city to possibly identify the persons who provided them sanctuary,” Albayalde told reporters during a press briefing on Monday.

Both are Islam converts (Balik Islam) who joined the Dawlah Islamiya Philippines under Hatib Hajan Sawadjaan, who assumed the leadership of the terrorist group upon the death of Isnilon Hapilon at the height of the Marawi City siege.

Slay of 2 Karapatan members could be handiwork of CPP-NPA

From the Philippine News Agency (Jun 17, 2019): Slay of 2 Karapatan members could be handiwork of CPP-NPA

Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Deputy Chief-of-Staff for Civil-Military Operations, Major General Antonio Parlade, Jr.

A National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF ELCAC) official expressed fear that the recent killing of two human rights group members in Sorsogon is the handiwork of the Communist Party of the Philippines – New People’s Army (CPP-NPA).

Major General Antonio Parlade, Jr., who is also Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Deputy Chief-of-Staff for Civil-Military Operations, said: “What we feared most is now happening and it is most likely that the killing was executed by the CPP, to support their filing of writs of Amparo and habeas data, the basis of which were their allegations of government harassment and attacks.”

Parlade called on the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) to seriously investigate the murder of Ryan Hubilla, 22-year-old senior high school student, and Nelly Bagasala, 69, both members of Karapata, by unknown gunmen in Seabreeze Homes Subdivision, Barangay Cabid-an, Sorsogon, on June 15.

“The AFP has nothing to gain with this killing especially in light of the filing of writs of Amparo and habeas data that the CPP and its petitioners do. Earlier, we warned that the CPP- NPA might start killing their own NUPL (National Union of Peoples Lawyers) members and Karapatan members if only to embarrass the state,” he said.

He added that no less than the late NPA rebel, Fr. Conrado Balweg, admitted to such killings, after an NPA ambush of government troops.

Balweg, in a taped interview, revealed how they would recover the uniforms of killed soldiers, and attack communities near ambush areas, to enrage the people and recruit more people into the NPA ranks, Parlade said.


“We warn other Karapatan and NUPL members to be more careful of the cunning ways of the CPP. We said before, at the end of this National Democratic Revolution, they will purge our society of professionals and intellectuals, and let the proletariat reign in their proletarian dictatorship,” he said, adding that initial reports indicate Hubilla and Bagasala worked for the release of arrested NPA members and paid the bail for their temporary liberty.

To the CPP-NPA rescue

Parlade said based on earlier exposés by the AFP, the Karapatan has always been the defenders of the CPP-NPA, which is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines.

AFP records showed Karapatan-Southern Mindanao Region secretary general Honey May Suazo, on July 7, 2015, paid PHP200,000 cash bond for the release of arrested leader Zaldy Canete alias “Ka Jinggoy”, who was arrested in Davao del Norte province in January 2010, for multiple murder charges in connection with several rebel attacks.

After his release, Canete reportedly became commander of the NPA’s 1st Pulang Bagani Command in Southern Mindanao, replacing Leoncio Pitao alias “Ka Parago”, who was killed in an encounter with Army soldiers in Barangay Pañalum, Paquibato District in Davao City in June 2015.

AFP spokesperson, Marine Brig. Gen. Edgard Arevalo, earlier said the bail payment receipt is one incriminating documentary evidence that links Karapatan with the communist terrorist group.

“This is one of the clear instances of Karapatan coming to the aid and succor of the communists,” he said.

“There are many other individuals out there whose temporary liberties can be secured by a bond. Let Karapatan justify why they are selective with whom they will shell out money,” he added.

Suspected DPAs

What needs to be considered now, Parlade said, are reports that the two victims were actually suspected by the CPP as tipsters and government deep penetration agents (DPAs) that led to the arrest of three staff of the CPP National Finance Commission in Sorsogon on April 10, 2019.

Carlito de Guzman alias Mario Torres/Jimi, Joan Cuesta alias Bettina dela Cruz/Janette Pardines alias Tina, and Hugo Fuentes y Frodo alias Hugo were found to be in possession of several high-powered firearms and ammunition.

Meanwhile, a group of former NPA members belonging to People’s Alliance for Truth and Healing (PATH), in an earlier report, claimed Karapatan is a human rights group for the defense of communists.

“Bakit tahimik ang Karapatan on the extrajudicial killings (EJK) sa loob ng kilusan, yung libo-libong pinag bintangan na deep penetration agents (DPA), mga sectoral group members na pinapatay kasi in opposition sa stand ng communist terrorist group (CTG)? Nasaan ang(Where is) Karapatan when it comes to that? (Why is Karapatan silent on the EJKs, the thousands accused and killed for being alleged DPAs, the many sectoral group members killed for opposing the stand of CTG),” lamented Ka Junie, of PATH which is also composed of survivors and relatives of victims of communist “purging”.

‘Premature’ to say Chinese vessel in WPS violated UNCLOS

From the Philippine News Agency (Jun 17, 2019): ‘Premature’ to say Chinese vessel in WPS violated UNCLOS

It is “premature” to say that the presence of the Chinese vessel, which allegedly rammed and abandoned a Filipino fishing boat near the Recto Bank in the West Philippine Sea on June 9, is a violation of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), Malacañang said on Monday.

“Premature pa nga kasi hindi pa natin alam ang facts. Ang alam natin -- initially hindi ba alam natin iniwan, tapos they’re disclaiming it (It’s still premature because we don’t know the facts yet. What we know is -- initially they were abandoned but then China is disclaiming it),” said Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo in a Palace briefing.

Supreme Court Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio, in a statement, earlier said the presence of the Chinese fishing vessel within the Philippine’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ) is a violation of UNCLOS.

“In the arbitration at The Hague, the tribunal ruled that the failure of China to prevent its fishing vessels, even those privately owned, from fishing within Philippine (EEZ) in the West Philippine Sea was a violation of UNCLOS,” Carpio said.

“Antayin muna natin, he (Carpio) will be right kung totoo iyong talagang iniwan iyong mga Pilipino sa barko (Let’s wait for the results of the investigation, he will be right if it’s true that the Filipinos were really abandoned),” Panelo commented.

Both findings

Panelo, meanwhile, said the Palace will consider the results of both investigations being conducted by Filipino and Chinese authorities.

“We are waiting for the final results of the investigation being conducted by the Chinese government, and that applies to us also because we are also conducting our own investigations,” Panelo said.

“Both findings will be considered. Let’s wait for the facts considering that our initial facts as relayed to us are being disputed,” he added.

He said while the probe is ongoing, initial claims will be considered “premature" but clarified this did not mean that Palace is doubting the testimony of Filipino fishermen who claimed that they were abandoned at sea.

If the Philippines and China have different results in their respective investigations, Panelo said an arbiter or judge will step in “to determine who is telling the truth.”

“O kung magkaiba, eh ‘di pag-uusapan natin bakit magkaiba. Bakit -- sinong mas tama. O siguro (If we have different findings, let’s talk about why they’re different. Why -- who is more correct. Or perhaps), we need to resolve that to an objective arbiter,” Panelo said.

He said the Philippine and Chinese authorities can also resolve the issue via Bilateral Consultative Mechanism.

Asked if different findings could also be resolved through the Permanent Court of Arbitration, Panelo said he will leave it to Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. to answer the question.

Not silent

Panelo also defended President Rodrigo Duterte from criticism that the latter has been “silent” by not making any pronouncement in relation to the sinking of the Filipino fishing boat.

“He’s (Duterte’s) not silent, he’s waiting for the facts to set in before he makes any declaration,” Panelo said.

“Tama si Presidente (The President is right), you cannot be responding kaagad nang (immediately) -- you have to know the facts. Iyon angtraining ng isang abogado (That’s the training of a lawyer),” he added.

Panelo also reiterated that as a matter of policy, the government will not allow any assault on Philippine sovereignty.

“Sovereignty is never a subject of negotiation,” Panelo said.

“Pag nga alam na natin ang facts at alam natin na tayo ang nasa disadvantage sa nangyaring iyon o ‘di siyempre mayroon tayong mga gagawin (When we know the facts and we know that we are at the disadvantage in the incident, of course we’ll do something) to show how serious we are in the protection of our sovereignty as well as our countrymen. Until such time, maghintay muna tayo (let’s wait),” he added.

Last week, Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. filed a diplomatic protest against China in relation to the alleged abandonment of Filipino fishermen at sea.

The Chinese Embassy, however, denied the abandonment and instead claimed that their vessel was “besieged” by several Filipino fishing boats.

"The Chinese captain tried to rescue the Filipino fishermen, but was afraid of being besieged by other Filipino fishing boats. Therefore, having confirmed the fishermen from the Filipino boat were rescued on board of other Filipino fishing boats, 42212 sailed away from the scene," the embassy said in a statement.

Junel Insigne, captain of the F/B GEM-VIR1 from Occidental Mindoro, reportedly said the Chinese vessel stopped for a while and flashed its lights but instead of rescuing them, the Chinese vessel left the sinking Filipino fishing boat.

According to an ABS-CBN report, Insigne said it took them two hours to find the Vietnamese vessel that rescued them.

PRRD on Reed Bank incident: Give other party right to be heard

From the Philippine News Agency (Jun 17, 2019): PRRD on Reed Bank incident: Give other party right to be heard

President Rodrigo R. Duterte (file photo)

President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday explained his recent silence on the Reed Bank (Recto Bank) incident, noting that he had to refrain from making statements since he would rather wait for results of the investigation of both the Philippine and Chinese authorities.

“It’s a maritime incident. It is best investigated and I will not issue a statement now because there is no investigation and there is no result. Then the only thing that we can do is to wait and give the other party the right to be heard,” Duterte said during the 121st anniversary of the Philippine Navy at the Naval Base Heracleo Alano in Cavite City.

“Importante ‘yan e. O China, marami ka mang binigay, ano ba dito ang totoo? Tapos ang nangyari ganito, then let us sort…ano ang ma-sort natin diyan (That’s important. China, you gave us a lot, what is the truth? Then this is what happened, let us sort, let’s find out a way to sort this out),” he added.

Around midnight of June 9, a Chinese vessel allegedly rammed and abandoned an anchored Filipino fishing boat with 22 fishermen on board near the Recto Bank in the disputed West Philippine Sea.

Duterte appealed not to aggravate the situation in the “maritime incident” which is only being hyped up by some politicians.

“Yang nangyari diyan sa banggaan (What happened in that collision), that is a maritime incident. ‘Wag kayong maniwala diyan sa mga politiko na bobo, gusto papuntahin yung Navy (Don’t believe stupid politicians who want the navy to go there),” Duterte said.

“You do not send gray ships there. Banggaan lang ng bangka ‘yan (That’s only a collision between two boats). Do not make it worse,” he added.

Duterte reiterated that the Philippines could not afford to go to war against China noting that a nuclear war could mean “the end of everything”.

He admitted that he wanted “action” over the Recto Bank incident but explained that he has a “duty” to rule as a “civilized nation”.

“With all yung galit (anger) and one national official even urging sending (to send) the gray ships, warships doon sa (to the) China sea. Alam mo gusto ko ‘yan, kung ako lang gusto ko ng (You know, I want that, I want) action but I am not in my boyhood age anymore,” said Duterte, who did not identify who he was referring to.

“I have a duty, that is a burden sometimes more than I carry — I can almost cry,” he added.

He said he is not insane enough to build further “tension” between the Philippines and China.

“If we have to die, we have to die in the correct way and to die with dignity hindi ‘yan basta bangga-banga ka lang diyan (not just over a collision),” Duterte said.

Last week, Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. filed a diplomatic protest against China in relation to the alleged abandonment of Filipino fishermen at sea.

The Chinese embassy in Manila denied the abandonment, saying the Chinese captain tried to rescue the Filipino fishermen “but was afraid of being besieged by other Filipino fishing boats”.

Junel Insigne, captain of the F/B GEM-VIR1 from Occidental Mindoro, reportedly claimed the Chinese vessel stopped for a while and flashed its lights but instead of rescuing them, the vessel left the sinking Filipino fishing boat.

Insigne said it took two hours before a Vietnamese vessel rescued them.

Kalinaw News: 190 Candidate Soldiers train at 7th Infantry Division

From Kalinaw News (Jun 17, 2019): 190 Candidate Soldiers train at 7th Infantry Division

Fort Magsaysay, Nueva Ecija – 190 young men were officially declared as Candidate Soldiers (CS) at the 7th Infantry Kaugnay Division Grandstand during the Opening of the Candidate Soldiers Course 2019, today at 8:30 a.m.

The CS will be training for more than five months at the 7th Division Training School (DTS) in Fort Magsaysay under the Command of Lieutenant Colonel Thomas Dominic V Baluga.

During the course of the training, the civilian mindset and habits of the CS will be transformed into military ways and thinking, akin to being born again as stronger, more courageous, and more disciplined versions of themselves.

Major General Lenard T Agustin AFP, Commander, 7ID, in his speech during the ceremony, emphasized that out of the 1,341 applicants, 973 passed the intense physical fitness test (PFT). From that number, only 190 made it through the final round; making them part of the 19% chosen few to compose the class.

The “bukod tanging kabataang Pilipino,” as MGen Agustin dubbed the new batch of CS, went through the “Army Dozen” exercises which tested the limits of their endurance. Those who quit or fail to withstand the one-hour round of exercises under the intense heat of the sun will be taken out of the list and will lose the chance to become a soldier of the Philippine Army.

As MGen Agustin said, “From this day on, expect that there will be drastic changes in your life…you will undergo rigorous trainings, you will be away from your loved ones and the comfort you have been used to, your sleeping hours will be lessened, and your meal time will be numbered…You will be taught how to be a soldier with honor and integrity. Your training will not be easy and simple. You will need not just strength but an open mind and firm determination, as your commitment to stay to the course will be strongly challenged. But those who will survive will be soldiers capable of facing any battle. You will be soldiers with the highest degree of discipline, committed to serve, and ever loyal to the country and to the people.”

Division Public Affairs Office 7th Infantry Division Philippine Army
Cpt Catherine H Jubas
Chief, Division Public Affairs Office, 7ID
Fort Magsaysay, Nueva Ecija

[Kalinaw News is the official online source of information on the pursuit for peace by the Philippine Army. It provides information on the activities of Army Units nationwide in the performance of their duty of Serving the People and Securing the Land. This website is a property of the Civil-Military Operations Regiment, Philippine Army located at Lawton Avenue, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City.]

CPP/NDF-Southern Tagalog: Ubos kayang labanan ang mapanganib at mapaminsalang Kaliwa Dam Project

NDF-Southern Tagalog propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (Jun 17, 2019): Ubos kayang labanan ang mapanganib at mapaminsalang Kaliwa Dam Project

JUNE 17, 2019

Press statement
Patnubay de Guia
Spokesperson, National Democratic Front-Southern Tagalog
June 14, 2019

Libo-libong buhay at ari-arian ng mga katutubong Dumagat at Mamamayan ng Real, Infanta at Nakar sa Quezon at Tanay sa Rizal ang nalalagay sa panganib dahil sa Proyektong Kaliwa Dam.

Walang pakialam si Duterte sa dalang panganib at posibleng kahinatnan ng libu-libong buhay at ari-arian ng mga katutubong Dumagat at mamamayan sa Real, Infanta, Nakar sa Quezon at Tanay sa Rizal dahil sa proyektong Kaliwa Dam. Para sa kanya, ang mahalaga ay may mapagkakitaan ang kanyang pamilya, mga kaibigang Filipino-Tsino at malalapit na lokal na burgesya komprador mula sa mga nakahanay na proyekto sa ilalim ng kanyang Build, Build, Build Program.

Ang pondo ng proyektong Kaliwa Dam ay mula sa pinasok ni Duterte na kasunduan sa utang sa gubyernong China sa pamamagitan ng China’s Official Development Assistance to the Philippines (CODAP) sa halagang $211.21 Milyon o katumbas na P18.7 Bilyon. Ang Kaliwa Dam ay isa sa siyam na infrastructure flagship projects ng gubyernong Duterte na popondohan sa ilalim ng CODAP.

Ngunit para sa mga rebolusyonaryo, mga progresibo at patriyotikong grupo at indibidwal, ang mga kasunduan ay makaisang panig, punong-puno ng kontrobersya dahil sa nagtataglay ito ng mga probisyon na pangunahing pumapabor sa bansang China. Isa itong malinaw na patibong at tahasang pagbebenta ng soberenya at patrimonya ng bansa dahil mismong nakasaad sa kasunduan na sakaling di makabayad ang Pilipinas sa mga utang nito sa China may karapatan ang bansang China na kunin ang mga pag-aari ng gubyerno ng Pilipinas o isang bahagi ng teritoryo ng bansa bilang kabayaran sakaling manalo sila sa arbitrasyon na isasagawa Hongkong alinsunod sa kanilang batas.

Nakasaad din sa kasuduan na ang pangunahing magpapatupad sa paggawa ng Kaliwa Dam ay ang kumpanyang China Energy Engineering Corporation Limited.

Ubos Kayang Labanan ang Mapanganib at Mapaminsalang Kaliwa Dam Project

Matibay, makatarungan at nakabatay sa kongkretong karanasan at pangyayari sa kasaysayan ang pinanggagalingan ng matinding oposisyon sa proyekto ng mga lokal na pamahalaan ng Infanta, Quezon at Tanay, Rizal kabilang ang mga kaparian ng Prelature of Infanta. Bukod sa maraming katutubong Dumagat at Remontado ang madidisloka ng proyekto, nangangamba silang maulit ang malagim na trahedya na nangyari sa kanilang bayan noong 2004 kung saan mahigit sa 1,600 mamamayan ng Real, Infanta at Nakar ang namatay dulot ng rumaragasang baha galing sa Ilog ng Agos at mga pagguho ng lupa sa ilang bahagi ng kabundukan ng Sierra Madre sanhi ng apat na magkakasunod na bagyong tumama sa silangang bahagi ng Luzon sa pagitan ng Nobyembre 14 at Disyembre 4, 2004. Kabilang sa mga ito ang mapaminsalang bagyong Winnie na tumama sa Silangang Luzon noong Nobyembre 29, 2004.

Sakaling matuloy at maging operational ang Kaliwa Dam, kailanman ay hindi magkakaroon ng kapanatagan ang mga mamamayan sa Real, Infanta at Nakar sa Quezon at maging sa Tanay Rizal. Laging iiral ang pangamba at takot sa hanay nila dahil sa potensyal na panganib na hatid ng Dam sa kanilang buhay at ari-arian lalo na kapag may dumarating na bagyo at malalakas na pag-ulan sa lugar. Sariwa pa sa kanilang ala-ala ang naganap na trahedya nuong 2004 kung saan nagmistulang malaking libingan ng kanilang mga mahal sa buhay ang ilang mga barangay sa Real, Infanta at Nakar bunga ng pagragasa ng tubig at putik mula sa kabundukan ng Sierra Madre. Hindi kayang garantiyahan ng Kaliwa Dam na walang magaganap na trahedya sa panahon ng pag-iral nito. Bagkus pinalalaki lang ng Kaliwa Dam ang posibilidad at potensyal na muling maulit ang malagim na trahedya nuong 2004.

Kailangang magsama-sama ang mga mamamayang nagmamahal sa kalikasan at sa mga katutubong lagi na lang nabibiktima ng mga pro-kapitalista at pro-imperyalistang mga proyekto ng reaksyunaryong gubyerno tulad ng Kaliwa Dam. Ibayong pahigpitin ang hanay at kapit-bisig na ipagtanggol ang kapakanan ng mga katutubo at mamamayan sa lugar at proteksyunan ang kapaligiran laban sa kagustuhan ng mga lokal na burgesya kumprador at amo nitong mga imperyalista na dambungin at salaulain ito sa ngalan diumano ng “kaunlaran”. Nagawa na nating pigilan ang proyekto sa panahon ng mga nagdaang rehimen. Kayang magawa din ito ngayon sa panahon ng rehimeng US-Duterte basta ang lahat ng mga apektado at mga tumututol sa proyekto ay magsasama-sama at magsasagawa ng iba’t ibang tipo ng paglaban upang hadlangan ang proyektong Kaliwa Dam.

Ang NDFP-ST ay nakikiisa at sumusuporta sa lahat ng nakikibakang mamamayan na tumututol sa mapaminsalang proyektong Kaliwa Dam. Laging handa ang rebolusyonaryong hukbo ng mamamayan na magsagawa ng mga punitibong aksyong militar para ipagtanggol ang kapakanan ng mga katutubo at mamamayan, protektahan ang kapaligiran sa anumang pagtatangkang wasakin ito at pigilan ang anumang mapaminsalang proyekto ng reaksyunaryong gubyerno na nagpopustura bilang mga proyektong pangkaunlaran.

Wasto, napapanahon at angkop ang naging pahayag ng Apolonio Mendoza Command ng New People’s Army ng probinsya ng Quezon na handa silang magsagawa ng mga taktikal na opensiba upang hadlangan ang proyektong Kaliwa Dam.###

CPP/NPA Sorsogon: Kundenahin ang pagpaslang sa 2 human rights worker!

NPA-Sorsogon propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (Jun 17, 2019): Kundenahin ang pagpaslang sa 2 human rights worker!

JUNE 17, 2019

Pinakamataas na antas ng pagkundena ang ipinapahayag namin sa ekstrahudisyal na pamamaslang na ginawa ng mga death squad ni Duterte sa dalawang staff ng Karapatan-Sorsogon.

Sina Ryan Hubilla, 22 taong gulang, grade 12 student sa Sorsogon National Highschool, residente ng Brgy. Trece Martirez, Casiguran at Nelly Bagasala, 69 taong gulang, may asawa at anak, residente ng Brgy. Sta. Lourdes, Barcelona, Sorsogon ay pababa ng traysikel sa Phase 2, Seabreeze Homes Subdivision, Brgy. Cabid-an, Sorsogon City ng pagbabarilin ng dalawang salaring nakamotorsiklo nitong Hunyo 15. Nakatakbo palayo at nakaligtas sa pamamaril ang kasama nilang si Maria Lagadia at ang drayber ng traysikel.

Bago sila paslangin, ilang beses nang hinaharas at binabantaan ng mga elemento ng 31st IBPA at MICO ang mga biktima. Pinagbibintangan silang mga protektor ng NPA. Tumindi pa ang pagmamanman sa kanila nang tumulong sila sa pag-aayos ng mga papeles para sa paglaya ng tatlong bilanggong pulitikal sa Sorsogon City District Jail noong Hunyo 14.

Sina Hubilla, Bagasala at Lagadian ay mga boluntaryong indibidwal na gumagampan ng hindi matatawarang mga sakripisyo upang matulungan ang kapwa nila mga Sorsoganon na biktima ng mga paglabag sa karapatang tao.

Ang lantaran at walang-habas na pamamaslang kahit sa kalunsuran ng rehimeng US-Duterte sa ilalim ng Memorandum Order 32 ay pagpapakita lamang ng kanyang karuwagan sa harap ng tumitinding paglaban ng mamamayan.

Nananawagan kami sa lahat ng may malasakit sa karapatang tao na makiisa sa pagtuligsa at pagpapakita ng galit sa pagpatay kina Hubilla at Bagasala. Lalong mag-uulol ang mga berdugo ng rehimeng Duterte kung mananahimik at matatakot ang taumbayan.

Hinahamon naman namin ang lahat ng mga bagong halal na opisyal ng lokal na reaksyunaryong gobyerno ng Sorsogon na nangakong magsisilbi sa bayan na magpakita at magbigay ng suporta sa pamilya ng mga biktima sa paghingi ng hustisya.

Alam ng lahat na mga ahente ng estado ang nasa likod ng mga pagpatay na ito. Sisingilin namin ang sinumang opisyal na kukunsinti at hindi kukundena sa ganitong mga paglabag.

Samuel Guerrero
Celso Minguez Command – BHB Sorsogon