Fri. Jun 25th, 2021

The Absalon family is not accepting any apology or indemnification from the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army (CPP-NPA) over its unprovoked anti-personnel mine (APM) attack that killed two of their members and injured another in Masbate City on June 6, a military official said on Thursday.

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“That apology was rejected by the Absalon family. What they said was that saying sorry will not end the liability of the NPA perpetrators, and even if they will give indemnification, the Absalon family will not accept it or any help from this terrorist group,” Marine Maj. Gen. Edgard Arevalo, Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) spokesperson said in Filipino during a Laging Handa briefing.

Arevalo said the AFP shares the Absalon family’s sentiments, adding that this reason why pursuit and law enforcement operations are still ongoing against the communist terrorists behind the blast that killed Far Eastern University football player Keith Absalon, his cousin Nolven, and injured Keith’s 16-year old nephew, Chrisbin Daniel.

Arevalo said government security troops are still gathering evidence that might be used to file charges against the suspects behind the attack.

He also scored the Makabayan bloc lawmakers’ suggestion that the family file a complaint at the Joint Monitoring Committee (JMC) regarding the incident as the body has been long dissolved with the termination of the peace talks with the communist terrorists upon orders of President Rodrigo R. Duterte. 

The peace talks with the communist terrorist group, he said, should not be resumed as they are only using the opportunity to violate human rights, kill innocent civilians, and continue with the stockpiling, manufacture, and transportation of APMs.

He added that the communist movement might also take advantage of this to extort from politicians ahead of next year’s elections.

On Nov. 23, 2017, the Chief Executive signed Proclamation 360 declaring the termination of peace talks with the communist terrorists citing the CPP-NPA-National Democratic Front (NDF)’s insincerity to the peace process.

Meanwhile, AFP deputy chief-for-operations, Maj. Gen. Edgardo de Leon, said the leadership of the CPP-NPA-NDF must be held liable for the incident.

De Leon cited the International Humanitarian Law’s (IHL) principle of the “responsibility of the superiors.”

“Under IHL, the superiors, not only the direct perpetrator are also responsible and liable (in the committed violation),” he said.

He said the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and IHL (CARHRIHL) that was signed by the Philippine government and the NDF in 1998.

“That document enumerated the leaders who should be brought to the courts of justice. We have read the statement of a group of lawmakers that mentions CARHRIHL. This document says in the first page, ‘The National Democratic Front of the Philippines including the Communist Party of the Philippines and the New People’s Army is hereinafter referred to as the NDFP,’ this means that the CPP-NPA is under the government of NDFP. They should be responsible in championing IHL. Now that their organization committed the violation, where are they now? They are in the Netherlands,” he added. SOVEREIGNPH

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