Thursday, September 11, 2008

M16 bullets not bombs, kill civilians

A top AFP official said they welcome any investigation into allegations that a bomb dropped by government forces in Datu Piang, Maguindanao, Monday(September 8, 2008), killed civilians. Citing an initial report, the official said that the civilians killed succumbed from bullet wounds of M16 rifles. The AFP fighter planes were equipped at that time with submachine guns which clearly indicates that the killer bullets came from the MILF forces and not from the AFP planes. AFP vice Chief of staff LTGEN CARDOZO LUNA said that the investigation would reveal the truth as to "how these people, how these children got into that situation."

Initial reports said six people, including three children, were killed Monday when a bomb allegedly dropped by military aircraft hit a motorized banca loaded with evacuees in a river in Brgy Tee, Datu Piang Town. In welcoming the probe, Luna said the military is strictly adhering to the rules of engagement while in pursuit of MILF Renegade members led by Umbra Kato alias Commander Kato in Central Minadanao and Abdullah Macapaar alias Commander Bravo in Lanao Del Norte.
Another official, Major Arman Rico of Eastern Mindanao Command said that there was an encounter in Brgy Tee, Datu Piang, between the Philippine Army and the MILF under Commander Wahid Tondok and Badrudin Silongan an hour before the death of the civilians. "The MILF fired at the military plane doing reconnaisance. The plane fired back using machinegun., " Rico said. The rebels withdrew on board motorized bancas and were spotted by military planes in the marshy area of Barangay Tee.

Meanwhile, Spokesman Victorino Reyes of Sambayanan Kontra Terorismo (SAKOTE) condemned the killing of the civilians in that incident. He also appealed to the leaders of MILF not to harm innocent civilians and use them as human shields in fighting the government Forces. " It is very un-Islamic to harm and kill innocent people, children, elders and burn their houses. Even beheading a dead enemy is not righteous for Islam is a religion of PEACE and RIGHTEOUSNESS. Laa ilaaha illallah Muhammadar- Rasullulah!" Reyes, a muslim convert, stressed. He also lamented the tactics of MILF of depriving the evacuees of humanitarian help and food when its members hijacked truckloads of foods and cargoes intended for the displaced civilians. " If these terrorists kill civilians, use them as human shields, deprive the people of food... they are also capable of killing those innocent civilians in Brgy Tee to gain media mileage and discredit the government forces. Have we forgotten what they did to the members of the Philippine Marines last year? What Commander Bravo and Kato did to the innocent civilians, and now using them as propaganda materials to the MEDIA to advance their cause? We must put a stop to this madness now!" the SAKOTE spokesman said.

Fallen Marines beheaded by sadistic members of
the Extremists Movement last July 2007

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