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Military files HR violation complaint against NPA

THE military filed a complaint for violation of the International Humanitarian Law against the New People’s Army (NPA) before the Commission on Human Rights in Region 10 on Friday.

RAPS VS. NPA. Colonel Edgardo de Leon, commander of Army’s 403rd Infantry Division, personally appears before the Commission on Human Rights (CHR-10) in Northern Mindanao on Friday, March 29, 2019, to submit complaints against members of the New People’s Army (NPA) in Bukidnon. Receiving the documents is CHR-10 director, lawyer Ivy Jeanne Abrina. (Photo courtesy of Army’s 4ID)

Col. Edgardo de Leon, commander of the Army’s 403rd Infantry Brigade, filed the complaint that stemmed from the NPA’s alleged involvement in atrocities in Bukidnon during the first quarter of this year.

He personally handed the complaint to CHR-10 even as he asked for an investigation to determine the culpability of the NPA and their leaders.

The complaint was filed the same day the NPA, the armed wing of the Communist Party of the Philippines, marked its 50th anniversary on Friday.

De Leon alleged that the NPA, under the instruction of the CPP, has not stopped from attacking civilians and destroying civilian properties in violation of the International Humanitarian Law.

“They physically and psychologically harmed civilians,” he said.

De Leon cited an incident on March 15, 2019 when NPA rebels burned a banana harvesting machine and two backhoes inside the compound of Davao Agricultural Ventures Corp. in Don Carlos, Bukidnon. He said one of the backhoes belonged to the Nagkahiusang Mag-uuma Agrarian Reform Cooperative whose members subsequently launched a rally to demand compensation from the NPA.

The military said the same thing was done on Jan. 18, 2019 when rebels burned a boom spraying machine of Del Monte Philippines  in Lilingayon, Valencia City, Bukidnon.

In Feb. 14, the military said, rebels “terrorized” women and children, and killed two soldiers in Sitio Green Valley, Barangay Dalwangan, Malaybalay City.

De Leon said rebels destroyed community property. He said civilians said one of the soldiers was no longer able to fight but still, rebels finished him off by riddling him with bullets.

The military said that under IHL, a wounded combatant must be spared. (PNA)

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