January 21, 2013
The prisoners of war currently under the custody of the New People’s Army Comval North Davao South Agusan Sub-regional Command are legitimate military targets who were on active duty when apprehended in an NPA checkpoint January 17, 2013.
Held as prisoners-of-war in compliance with the NDFP Unilateral Undertaking to Implement Protocol II of the Geneva Conventions are Private First Class Jesreel Maata Culango, (serial No. 898158), 23, who is part of the Special Operations Team of the 60th Infantry Battalion deployed in San Isidro, Davao del Norte, and Police Officer 1 Ruel Pasion (Badge No.194812), 31, deployed at the San Isidro police station. Culango was on off duty January 15 and was back to work January 16 until he was captured by the NPA. Pasion’s.45 caliber pistol (firearm license ctrl # 1B907458) was confiscated at the time of the arrest.
Proper procedures are being undertaken by the Sub-regional command custodial unit to ascertain possible acts of commission by POW Culango and POW Pasion in violating human rights and international humanitarian law (IHL) in the course of their direct participation to the GPH’s counter-revolutionary and anti-people’s war.
The January 17 NPA checkpoint/POW-taking was a punitive action against the 60th IB-AFP and PNP for its abuses and violations of human rights. It is within the jurisdictional authority of the People’s Democratic Government and its people’s army to arrest enemy active combatants that harm the people and base areas.
The 60th IB committed serious abuses of human rights and IHL in its psychological warfare against the masses, forced surrender of civilians, conduct of checkpoints and intelligence network building while the GPH-NDFP December 20, 2012-January 15, 2013 temporary ceasefire was in force. The PNP is part of the brigade-sized combat formation of the AFP and PNP that launched offensive military operation in Davao del Norte and Comval since the past months that resulted in various cases of human rights violations.
The AFP is desperate to turn the tide of people’s wrath against them; the enemy has resorted to harassing leaders of Typhoon Pablo victims who have put up a legitimate struggle against the US-Aquino regime’s ineptness, neglect and pro-imperialist-anti-people stance towards climate change and environmental protection. In the NPA’s custody of prisoners of war, the same distressed AFP spokespersons and spin-doctors resort to more desperate measures. To relieve their fascist egos, they misrepresent the two prisoners of war as “doing nothing belligerent” and were “unarmed” at the time of the latter’s capture. The AFP also insults the public’s intelligence when they say that the NPA’s POW-taking was meant to deter them from their supposed heroic efforts towards Typhoon Pablo victims. They have swapped their historical pro-logging, pro-mining and pro-environmental destruction notoriety with publicity blitz-fueled disaster response.
It is illusory for these frantic enemy spokespersons to deny the legitimacy of the political and military victories in the armed struggle and revolutionary mass movement. The Red fighters shall continue to frustrate unwarranted military operations of the AFP and the PNP that serve the greedy interests of capitalists and the reactionary power.