Sat. Feb 27th, 2021
(Photo Courtesy: http://www.pna.gov.ph)

The Commission on Human Rights (CHR) in Region 13 (Caraga) has condemned the killing of Datu Jumar Bucales and his companions on October 4 last year by the New People’s Army (NPA), saying that act was a case of human rights violation.

“By launching an attack, the NPA violates the principles of distinction and precaution. In gist, the principle of distinction requires that parties to an armed conflict must distinguish between civilians and combatants. Attacks must not be directed against any civilians,” stated in a report approved and signed by CHR Caraga Regional Director Atty. Jerefe D. Tubigon-Bacang.

“On the other hand, the principle of precaution directs the parties to undertake constant care to spare civilians. Unfortunately, the NPA failed to do this. As such, they committed human rights violations by killing Datu Jumar Bucales, Alberto Dela Pena, and Artemio Muldez and wounded several others. All of these acts are expressly prohibited under RA 98.51…Wherefore, premises considered, the Office finds human rights violation in this case,” it added.

On a separate report, residents, who requested anonymity, in their complaints said members of the NPA under Rizaldy Sumonod, alias Mansoy/Eman, also harassed a civilian, Braeil Salinas, 26 years old, farmer and resident of Barangay Mabuhay, Prosperidad, Agusan del Sur last January 2 in the barangay. Salinas suffered a gunshot wound in the stomach.

About more or less seven NPAs also fired at a government patrol base, prompting the government forces to hit back.

It can be recalled that in February 2020, three civilians were also wounded after the NPAs lobbed a grenade at Sitio Emerald (Kilometer 10) in Diatagon, Lianga, Surigao del Sur in a desperate attempt to terrorize residents and force another evacuation of resident. This is the usual scheme of the NPA under its “Taktikang Bakwit” to evade government forces and use civilians as human shields.

The CHR in Caraga also condemned the NPA attack. SOVEREIGNPH

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