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PostPosted: Fri Mar 03, 2017 12:00 am 
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ASG (Abu Sayyaf Group)
Abu Sayyaf is a Jihadist terror group based in and around Jolo and Basilan islands in the southwestern part of the Philippines, where for more than four decades, Moro groups have been engaged in an insurgency for an independent province in the country. The group is considered violent, and was responsible for the Philippines' worst terrorist attack, the bombing of Superferry 14 in 2004, which killed 116 people. The name of the group is derived from the Arabic abu (Arabic: أبو‎‎) ("father of"), and sayyaf (Arabic: سيّاف‎‎) ("swordsmith"). As of 2012, the group was estimated to have between 200 and 400 members, down from 1,250 in 2000. They use mostly improvised explosive devices, mortars, and automatic rifles.

Since its inception in 1991, the group has carried out bombings, kidnappings, assassinations, and extortion in what they describe as their fight for an independent Islamic province in the Philippines. They have also been involved in criminal activities, including kidnapping, rape, child sexual assault, forced marriage, drive-by shootings, extortion, and drug trafficking, and the goals of the group "appear to have alternated over time between criminal objectives and a more ideological intent".



BIFF (Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters)
The Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters, also known as the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Movement, is an Islamist militant organization based in Mindanao, the Philippines. They are a smaller player in the overall Moro insurgency in the Philippines and are mostly active in Maguindanao and other places in central Mindanao. It is a breakaway group from the Moro Islamic Liberation Front founded by Ameril Umbra Kato.



Maute Group(ISIL)
The Maute group which also goes by the name Islamic State in Lanao is a radical Islamist group composed of former Moro Islamic Liberation Front guerrillas and some foreign fighters led by Abdullah Maute, the alleged founder of a Dawlah Islamiya, or Islamic state based in Lanao del Sur, Mindanao, Philippines.



NPA (New People's Army)
The New People's Army is the armed wing of the Communist Party of the Philippines. It was formed and founded by Bernabe Buscayno A.K.A. "Commander Dante" on March 29, 1969



JI (Jemaah Islamiah)
Jemaah Islamiah, meaning "Islamic Congregation", frequently abbreviated JI) is a Southeast Asian militant extremist Islamist terror group dedicated to the establishment of a Daulah Islamiyah (regional Islamic caliphate or state) in Southeast Asia. On October 25, 2002, immediately following the JI-perpetrated Bali bombing, JI was added to the UN Security Council Resolution 1267 as a terrorist group linked to al-Qaeda or the Taliban.

JI is a transnational organization with cells in Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia and the Philippines. In addition to al-Qaeda the group is also thought to have links to the Moro Islamic Liberation Front and Jamaah Ansharut Tauhid, a splinter cell of the JI which was formed by Abu Bakar Baasyir on July 27, 2008.



RSM (Rajah Sulaiman Movement)
The Rajah Sulaiman Movement was an organization in the Philippines, founded by Ahmed Santos in 1991. Its membership consisted of Filipino Christians who had converted to Islam. According to the Philippine government, the group's militants had been trained, financed and governed by Abu Sayyaf and Jemaah Islamiah, a Philippine terrorist group with links to Al Qaeda

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 03, 2017 12:01 am 
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1 ASG patay sa Zamboanga
By Betchai ­Julian March 1, 2017 12:00:54 am


Isang kasapi ng teroristang Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) ang patay habang dalawa sa kasamahan nito ang naaresto sa joint operaton ng Philippine National Police-Special Action Force (PNP-SAF) sa Alicia, Zamboanga Sibugay.

Ayon sa ulat, kinilala ang napatay na si Imam Ya­sin, habang ang dalawang naaresto ay sina Aujaie Moh Abdul Karim at si Murad Mohammad na pawang mga sangkot sa serye ng pagdukot sa lugar.

Sa impormasyon mula sa Zamboanga Sibugay Police, isinagawa ang operasyon dakong alas-tres ng madaling-araw kahapon na pinangunahan ng 84th Special Action Company sa Sitio Tarlah, Brgy. Tampalan.

Narekober mula sa mga bandido ang M14 rifle, mga cellphone kasama ang mga subversive document.



https://www.abante-tonite.com/1-asg-pat ... boanga.htm

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 03, 2017 12:03 am 
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Kalakalan sa ARMM sinuspinde
By Betchai Julian March 2, 2017 12:00:56 am

Dahil sa sunud-sunod na pag-atake ng mga ­pirata sa Sulu ay sinuspinde muna ng mga international traders ang pangangalakal sa Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) partikular sa Polloc Port sa Maguindanao.

Ayon kay Ishak Mastura, chairman ng ARMM Regional Board of Investments, lubha silang nababahala sa laganap na pamimirata sa Sulu Sea na nakaapekto sa international trade na nagreresulta ng kawalan ng kita ng rehiyon.

Naitala ang pinakahuling pag-atake noon ­lamang Pebrero 19 kung saan pinatay ng mga pirata ang isang tripulanteng Vietnamese at dinukot ang pitong iba pa nitong kasamahan.

Ito umano ang dahilan kaya sinuspinde ang mga shipments sa Sulu Sea patungo sa mga pantalan sa Mindanao.



https://www.abante-tonite.com/kalakalan ... spinde.htm

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 03, 2017 12:06 am 
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Sayyaf atrocities must be stopped
BY THE MANILA TIMES ON MARCH 2, 2017

WE add our voice to those of President Rodrigo Duterte, other government officials, and the Filipino people in expressing our deep condolences and solidarity with the family, friends and countrymen of German national Jurgen Gustav Kantner at his senseless and brutal murder at the hands of the Abu Sayyaf terrorist group.

Kantner, as far too many innocent victims before him, was savagely beheaded by the Abu Sayyaf after their demand for P30 million ransom was ignored by the government, months after he was kidnapped with his companion while sailing in the southern Philippines.

Reason and conscience dictate that we must support the President’s firm position that terrorist demands cannot be entertained. He was entirely correct when he explained that, despite the tragic outcome for which he offered a heartfelt apology, giving in to terrorist demands would only encourage more of the same from the Abu Sayyaf, and put more people at risk of suffering the same fate.

But that same reason and conscience remind us that there is no such thing as an acceptable loss when it comes to innocent human life. The government has a duty to protect all its citizens and law-abiding foreign visitors, and while we appreciate President Duterte’s candid admission that the government failed in the case of the unfortunate Mr. Kantner, we must join our voice to those calling on the government to redouble its efforts to end the Abu Sayyaf scourge.

Those efforts, however, must be holistic. Indeed, the military response the President has ordered is appropriate in the sense that the country cannot tolerate the presence of a lethally equipped band of criminals who seek to do harm to innocent people, and if they cannot be captured or compelled to surrender, they must be destroyed. But the military response must not aggravate the volatile situation that breeds extremism in the first place; it must be carefully targeted to avoid causing harm to civilians.

The government must also give its full support to those in the affected Muslim communities who speak for peace and reason, and who condemn the sort of extremism espoused by the Abu Sayyaf and similar groups.

To that end, the government should take the lead in making Muslims and non-Muslims alike in the Philippines feel as though they are part of one shared community. We are fortunate, in a way, that Filipinos are not inclined to the sort of intolerance that adversely affects communities in other parts of the world; despite our troubles, we do not see the senseless bigotry here that affects many Muslims in other countries. Provoking that sort of division in our larger national community is exactly what the Abu Sayyaf is trying to achieve, but it is a provocation we can resist easily, with proper leadership.

And as the President has already recognized, addressing the underlying conditions that allow extremism to flourish – extreme poverty, lack of opportunity, overlooked development – are critical to preventing the disease of extremism from spreading. In studies of terrorist recruits, social scientists have found that frustration and feelings of powerlessness drive many to the extremist camp, where they find a sense of belonging and purpose, no matter how twisted it may be. Giving them better options – communities where basic needs like water and electricity are not luxuries, where there are opportunities for education and gainful employment, where there is peace and security for families – is effective in erasing the appeal of extremism.

We are saddened by the death of Mr. Kantner, as well as those who suffered the same fate before him, because even though we understand that the rest of the world recognizes it is not the fault of the Filipino people but rather a small band of thugs, we must feel somehow that the sad incident reflects poorly on us all. We pride ourselves on being friendly and welcoming to all visitors, and are shamed when such a tragic death occurs. Erasing that stain should be enough to inspire us all to stand with our leaders and not only reject extremism and violence in all its forms, but lend our full support in eradicating it and preventing its return.




http://www.manilatimes.net/sayyaf-atroc ... ed/314924/

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 03, 2017 12:08 am 
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AFP deploys missile firing naval gunboat to Sulu vs Abu Sayyaf
March 2, 2017 PNA Nation

The government’s all-out offensive against the Abu Sayyaf terrorists hiding in the jungles of Sulu and Basilan is being boosted with the deployment for the first time of naval gunboats armed with surface-to-surface missiles, according to Defense Secretary Delfin N. Lorenzana.

In an exclusive interview with PNA on Wednesday, Lorenzana said the surface-to-surface missiles are the latest weapons acquired by the Philippine Navy (PN) as the modernization of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) which is long overdue.

The Joint Task Force Sulu of the military presently commanded Army Col. Cirilito Sobejana, has mounted a relenting offensive against the Abu Sayyaf in the island of Sulu since Monday following the beheading of Jurgen Gustav Kantner, a German national hostage by the Abu Sayyaf since November last year.

Sobejana, a recipient of the Medal of Valor, the highest AFP medal for bravery in combat, has ordered a ground and air assaults on Abu Sayyaf lairs in the jungles of Sulu without letup.

Lorenzana said the deployment of naval gunboats armed with surface-to-surface missiles against the terrorist group shows the determination of President Rodrigo R. Duterte to crush once and for all the Abu Sayyaf.

He condemned the Abu Sayyaf for beheading Kantner, who had not committed a wrong doing against the terrorist group, adding that beheading is inhuman.

Lorenzana, a retired major general of the Philippine Army, and a highly decorated combat officer as commander of the famed Scout Rangers of the Philippine Army, said he expects the AFP to crush the Abu Sayyaf in a year.

He said that based on intelligence report there are about 300 Abu Sayyaf armed with high-powered firearms.

Even before the beheading, the Joint Task Force has been pounding Abu Sayyaf lairs with 105mm howitzers and helicopter gunships of the Philippine Air Force (PAF), using air-to-ground rockets and M60 machine guns the past week in an effort to rescue Kantner.

Some of the government troops pursuing the terrorists are equipped with night vision goggles.

Lorenzano said the AFP will buy additional night vision devices to upgrade their fighting capability at night.

“We will buy more for our soldiers,” Lorenzana said.

Night vision goggles enable the soldiers to operate at night and see the enemy where they are hiding during combat at night.



http://www.update.ph/2017/03/afp-deploy ... yyaf/15070

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 03, 2017 12:09 am 
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Philippine military kills five Abu Sayyaf terrorists behind German hostage's beheading

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A file picture of the Philippines military preparing for an assault on rebels in Mindanao on Jan 26, 2015. - AFP


ZAMBOANGA CITY: At least five terrorists were killed as the Philippine army launched an assault on the Abu Sayyaf group believed to have beheaded a German captive, China's Xinhua news agency reported a military official as saying on Thursday.

The official said 11 Philippine army troopers were also injured during the operation late Wednesday in the jungle near Indanan Town, Sulu Province, in southern Philippines.

Maj Gen Carlito Galvez Jr, commander of Western Mindanao Command (Westmincom), said troops from the 2nd Scout Ranger Battalion (SRB), assaulted the fleeing Abu Sayyaf terrorists it tracked down in the jungle of Bud (mountain) Taran before sunset.

The Bud Tara mountain range is near Buanza village, where intelligence reports indicated the Abu Sayyaf group beheaded 70-year old German Juergen Kantner last Sunday.

Kantner was abducted in November last year and Abu Sayyaf demanded a 30mil peso (RM2.65mil) ransom for his release.

The kidnappers set a 3pm Sunday deadline for payment, and he was killed after the demand was not met.

During the 10-minutes gunfight, five terrorists were killed and an undetermined number were wounded, said Galvez.

The terrorists fired rounds from a grenade rifle to cover their retreat, which resulted in injuries to 10 troopers while another was hit by a bullet.

According to Galvez, ground forces indicated the group in the shootout was among those responsible for beheading Kantner.

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has ordered the military to launch an all-out offensive against the estimated 500 Abu Sayyaf terrorists operating mostly in the hinterlands of southern Philippine provinces of Sulu and Basilan.

Duterte on Tuesday apologised to the German government, its people and Kantner's family after the Philippine government failed to rescue him and save him from being beheaded by the terrorists.

"I would like to assure everybody that for as long as there is the violence being perpetrated, the Republic of the Philippines will continue with its military operations," he said. – Bernama


Read more at http://www.thestar.com.my/news/regional ... jHlp9Yr.99

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 03, 2017 12:12 am 
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​’Barbaric, un-Islamic​’: Mindanao solons​ hit​ ​A​bu Sayyaf’s​ ​beheading of German hostage
Mar. 01, 2017 PAULO C. RIZAL


DAVAO CITY, Philippines — Moro lawmakers on Wednesday condemned ​​as “barbaric” and “un-Islamic” the Abu Sayyaf Group’s beheading of 70-year old German national Jurgen Kantner​.

“​​This act of terrorism is not in accordance with the Islamic religion or way of life to which we as representatives of our people, here in the Philippines, belong. We are making this statement, lest the rest of the country and the world would perceive our people to consent to, or to encourage, or to support such brutal, barbaric acts done not only to a foreigner, but to any innocent person,” said Maguindanao 1st District Rep. Bai Sandra Sema.

Sema called on the public to “spare” the Moro people from “unfair generalizations” and “unfounded discrimination.”

Anak Mindanao Partylist Rep. Sitti Djalia Turabin-Hataman called on a review of the approach used in dealing with the ASG.

“I think there is a need for us to constantly review the approach of the gov​ernmen​​t​, particularly the security sector. Baka kailangang baguhin natin. Mukhang merong mga approaches, strategies na hindi effective. Kailangan bang pag-aralan. Sa amin sana ay mas ma engage ang local leaders (Maybe we have to change some things. It looks like there are approaches and strategies that are not effective that have to be studies. For our part, we think we need to engage local leaders more),” Hataman said.

Hataman also dismissed the notions that the ASG enjoys the support of Muslims, pointing out that they were also victims of the ASG.

“Kami pong mga Muslims ay victims din ng Abu Sayyaf. This is something that we want to correct also, yung notion na they are just against non-Muslims” (We Muslims are also victims of the Abu Sayyaf. We also want to correct the notion that [the ASG] are just against non-Muslims), Hataman said.

“Itong terrorism ay hindi pumipili ng religion, pati rin kapwa nilang Tausug, kapwa nilang Yakan, kung tingin nilang pagkakakitaan” (Terrorism does not discriminate between religions. [They also target] their fellow Tausugs, Yakans, if they see an opportunity to get money), Hataman said.

Tawi-Tawi Rep. Ruby Sahali called on the local government units and communities to do their part in addressing the threat posed by the ASG.

“It’s not just the work of the military for peacekeeping, it’s also the work of LGUs come hand in hand with all of the community na nagbabantay po talaga sa areas nila of possible attacks, possible activities of ASG (It’s not just the work of the military for peacekeeping, it’s also the work of LGUs come hand in hand with all of the community guarding their areas for possible attacks and activities by the ASG),” Sahali said.

A video of Kantner beheaded by masked men believed to be members of the ASG surfaced on Monday, Feb. 27 through SITE Intelligence Group, which monitors terrorist groups.

The beheading came after the deadline of ransom lapsed on Sunday, 3 pm. The Philippines has a standing no ransom policy.

President Rodrigo Duterte ​has already ​apologized to Germany, maintaining that the government exhausted all efforts to save Kantner.

“I am very sorry that the hostage, a national of your country has been beheaded. I sympathize with the family, I commiserate with the German people. But I said we tried, there’s a massive operation going on,” Duterte said. (davaotoday.com)



http://davaotoday.com/main/politics/%E2 ... n-hostage/

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 03, 2017 12:17 am 
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NPA on Mayor Sara’s peace offer: NDF still the negotiating entity
Mar. 02, 2017 MART D. SAMBALUD

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The New People’s Army in Southern Mindanao Region says it would gladly discuss any matter that Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte would like to take up with the revolutionary movement. (davaotoday.com file photos)

DAVAO CITY, Philippines—The New People’s Army in Southern Mindanao emphasized that although it welcomed the talks with Mayor Sara Duterte, it stands by the national leadership of the National Democratic Front of the Philippines as the negotiating entity in the peace process.

NPA Southern Mindanao Spokesperson Rigoberto Sanchez issued a statement Wednesday to draw a clear line of its upcoming talks with the city’s local chief executive.

This as Sanchez slammed the Armed Forces of the Philippines in Davao region for requesting an augmentation force that will be deployed in Davao City.

“To make certain its all-out war is sustained, the AFP in the region has already beefed up its infantry. ​Their arrival mocked the public statement made by GRP Mayor Sara Duterte to talk with the NPA in the wake of the tactical offensives in Calinan last week,” he said.

Sachez said the NPA’s tactical offensives against state security forces in Davao region has resulted to 20 fatalities. He added that the communist fighters have also foiled a score of military assaults in Davao Oriental, Davao del Norte, Davao City and North Cotabato, respectively.

“By its own account after two day-engagement, the AFP launched massive airstrikes and artillery bombardment in the two separate incidents. More than a total of 500 families in Bansalan and Asuncion towns have been displaced due to the AFP’s indiscriminate shelling,” Sanchez said.

Meantime, the NPA said that it would “abide by their duty to defend the masses and the revolutionary movement by launching punitive actions against the AFP, PNP and their paramilitaries who are deaf to the call for peace by carrying on with a futile all-out war.” (davaotoday.com)


http://davaotoday.com/main/politics/npa ... ng-entity/

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 03, 2017 12:25 am 
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NPA prisoners’ parents, wife plead to Duterte: Help us bring them back
Mar. 02, 2017 ZEA IO MING C. CAPISTRANO

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(L-R) Jesame Garay, wife of Private First Class Samuel Garay and Editha Salan, mother of Pfc. Edwin Salan appeals to both President Rodrigo Duterte and the New People’s Army at a press conference in Davao City on February 24, 2017 to help them bring back their loved ones. The two soldiers were among the six prisoners taken by the NPAs in Mindanao. The NPA has already announced they would release the prisoners. (Shino Bansil/Kilab Multimedia)

DAVAO CITY, Philippines — Families of ​soldiers who were taken ​ as prisoners by the New People’s Army in Mindanao are pleading for ​P​resident ​Rodrigo Duterte’s help to to help them get back their ​kin​.

​​A wife who is pregnant with their first born, and parents who are searching for their son for already a month appealed to Duterte to help ​​them be reunited with their loved ones.​​
Editha Salan, mother of Private First Class Erwin Salan​, ​ travelled to Davao City with Edgar, her husband and their youngest son to seek help from peace advocates in calling for his release​. Pfc, Salan​ ​​of the 30th Infantry Battalion​ ​was taken on January 29 in Lumondo Falls, Budlingin, Alegria, Surigao del Norte.

On Friday, February 24, Editha recounted ​in a press conference ​her family’s ordeal to seek ​​assistance for he​r​ eldest son’s release​.​ Editha said they travelled from Bukidnon province to Surigao del Sur to meet with United Church of Christ in the Philippines ​B​ishop Modesto Villasanta in Tandag, Surigao del Sur.
Villasanta is a convenor of the Exodus for Justice and Peace, an alliance that acts as a third party facilitator for the release of prisoners of war.

“We didn’t know where to go, we just got an address and travelled from Bukidnon to Surigao. When we arrived at the place we failed to catch a bus going Tandag because the last trip has already left. We slept at the bus terminal,” she said. It was raining that time and the three of them didn’t have any blanket.

When she saw Villasanta, she recounted telling him: “Kung pwede ra baklayon kung asa na padulong, akong baklayon para lang makauli akong anak (If only I can walk to where he is now, I will do it so he can come home with us already).”

Pfc Salan is their second child and is the breadwinner of the family.

Editha pleaded to President Rodrigo Duterte to help them in getting her son back so they could come home to their children who were left in Bukidnon. “Maluoy unta ang presidente nato, para makauli na mi kay nabiyaan na among pamilya didto (I hope our President will sympathize with us so we can come home already, our family is left I Bukidnon).”

“Mr. President, please help us,” Editha called.

“Ayaw na unta padugaya pa nga mapauli akong anak, para makauli na sad mi sa Bukidnon (I hope you will not waste any more time so my son will be released, so we can go home in Bukidnon),” she said.

First child

Twenty-two years old Jesame Garay is four-months pregnant with her first child. In an interview with Davao Today Jesame said her husband, Pfc Samuel Garay is excited to see their firstborn.

She was only more than eight weeks pregnant when he left. Jesame has last seen her husband on his birthday last January 11. He left on January 12.
“He told me that he will report to the battalion headquarters of the 39th Infantry Battalion in Colombio, Sultan Kudarat and will accompany Sargeant Solaiman Calocop,” Jesame said.

Calocop was also taken as a “prisoner of war” along with Garay said before Pfc. Garay on February 2, by the New People’s Army in Crossing Bantangan on their way to their battalion headquarters in Makilala town, North Cotabato.

Jesame called on President Duterte to help her bring back her husband.

“Una​,​ sa ​P​resident​,​ na unta makauli na akong bana kay lisud kaayo akong kahimtang kay una buntis ko sa pirmero namo nga anak (First (I appeal) to the president, so that my husband can come home to us because my situation is difficult, I am pregnant with our first child),” she said.

Jesame said since her husband was taken, she cannot eat and sleep well and she fears for the safety of their baby.

She also appealed to the NPAs not to hurt her husband who is a good man. “Unta dili pud nila ipagkait na makita pa sa akong bana ang among anak puhon kay excited na pud kaayo to siya sa akong gibuntis (I hope they will not take away the opportunity for my husband to see our child, he was very excited since I got pregnant),” she told reporters.

“Buotan pud akong bana sukad pag-ipon namo. Wala gyud koy maingon (My husband is really kind since we lived together, I cannot say anything bad about him),” she said.

NPA’s assurance

On February 14, the NPA’s Valentin Palamine Regional Operations Command operating in Far South Mindanao released videos of Calocop and Garay who ​are in their custody.

Ka Dencio Madrigal, spokesperson of the NPA command assured the families that they are treating the soldiers well.

“The two are presently being investigated for their involvement in the crimes perpetrated by the 39th IB against the people and the revolutionary movement,” Madrigal said.

In their video messages the two soldiers appealed to the Army to cease all military operations as these only endanger their lives and safety. Madrigal said “combat troops of the 39th IB are still operating in Sultan Kudarat while their peace and development, outreach program teams continue to make peasant and Lumad communities as military garrisons.”


6 prisoners to be released soon

On February 17, National Democratic Front of the Philippines Mindanao spokesman, Joaquin Jacinto said they will soon release six prisoners soon including Salan and Garay.

The other prisoners were PO2 Jerome Anthony Natividad who was captured by the NPAs from the Mt. Kitanglad Sub-regional Command on February 9 in Talacag, Bukidnon and Cafgu Active Auxiliary members Carl Mark Nucos and Rene Doller who were captured in Lupon, Davao Oriental on February 14.

‘Thinking a thousand times’

Duterte told reporters on Tuesday, that he will “think a thousand times” about the peace negotiations.

“I will think about it.. I will think a thousand times, then consult the Cabinet, including the Left leaning,” Duterte said.

Duterte said there will be a time to discuss the problem together with the Cabinet officials. He also stressed that the government’s interest “must prevail.”

“It’s best that we discuss it, not now, about this problem and navigate again this thorny water in our country, but government interest must prevail, government interest must prevail,” he said.

Push for peace talks

Bishop Felixberto Calang of the Iglesia Filipina Independiente and lead convenor of the Sowing the Seeds of Peace movement said ceasefire does not equate to peace.

“Peace is about jobs, it’s about justice, it’s about food, and it’s about freedom. Kanang upat wala na karon (Those four things are lacking now),” he said.

Calang said peace talks is about addressing the root cause of the armed conflict. Calang who was present during the third round of talks in Rome, Italy said he witnessed its success.

“Both Parties came up with several agreements that will ensure the gains for the Filipino,” he said.

“The parties need to explore possibilities to continue the talks and talk about significant reforms for the people,” he added.

The NDFP in Mindanao also urged the government to resume the formal talks despite the absence of any ceasefire agreement.

“After the success of the third round of the talks, the Duterte government cannot, at this point, ignore this resounding call to set into motion the possible implementation of genuine agrarian reform and national industrialization. If genuine agrarian reform and national industrialization are carried out to the satisfaction of Filipino peasants, workers and national minorities, millions will surely benefit and significantly improve their lives,” Joaquin said.

“Both the GRP and the NDFP owe it to the Filipino masses, at the very least, to continue to buckle down in significant dialogue and thresh out, and possibly agree on, means to eradicate the very roots of armed conflict in the country, which are feudal exploitation, US imperialist domination and bureaucrat-capitalism,” he added. (davaotoday.com)




http://davaotoday.com/main/human-rights ... them-back/

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 03, 2017 12:30 am 
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Army: NPA numbers dwindle
Wednesday, March 01, 2017 By ANNA ANGELICA B. SOTTO

THE presence of the New People's Army (NPA), the armed group of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP), continues to dwindle in Davao Region, an army official said.

"The CPP-NPA is losing its mass base support. They are down by 25 percent in terms of membership and firearms but still they act as if they are still strong," said AFP Eastern Mindanao Command (Eastmincom) Deputy General Gilbeurt Gapay, who was guest in Wednesday's AFP-PNP Press Conference at the Royal Mandaya Hotel.

The army recorded a total of 63 neutralized NPA members since the lifting of the unilateral ceasefire last month.

Gapay defined neutralized rebels as those who were killed, arrested, captured or surrendered to security forces.

"We are conducting focus military operations to go against armed groups who promote violence," he added.

For his part, 100st Infantry Brigade (IB) Commander Macky Alberto said that most of the NPA's new members are either involved in drugs to escape the Oplan Tokhang operation of the Philippine National Police (PNP) or forced to join the rebel group.

Since February 21, Eastmincom reported a total of 21 military encounters with the rebel group, most recent was Tuesday, February 28 at New Corella and San Jose, Boston, Davao Oriental.



Read more: http://www.sunstar.com.ph/davao/local-n ... dle-528655
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 03, 2017 12:33 am 
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Maute Group's victim exhumed in Lanao del Sur
Roxanne Arevalo, ABS-CBN News
Posted at Mar 01 2017 11:04 PM


ILIGAN CITY - Following the arrest of Maute Group member Diamen Alonto last week, the remains of their victim Deudomie dela Pena was exhumed at Barangay Bansayan, Poona Bayabao town in Lanao del Sur on Monday.

Alonto led authorities to the exact spot where members of the terrorist group buried Dela Peña. He was forced to reveal the crime after the police seized from them a list of the vehicles they have stolen and details of what they did to the drivers.

Dela Peña was a resident of Cagayan de Oro who went missing in February 21 this year.

A relative of the victim said Dela Peña used to lease and drive a brand new van to and from Iligan and Cagayan de Oro. At the time he went missing, he was bringing with him a huge amount of money.

The money and the van were not recovered.

Relatives of JR Frias, a taxi driver in Iligan who had been missing for two weeks now, fear that he is also dead.

His wife Zhona said the plate number of the taxi that Frias drives was also on the Maute list.

"The plate number, the type of vehicle, the time and place where they hailed him were written there," she said.

Zhona hopes the authorities would locate his husband, but the police have yet to confirm that Frias is dead.

Superintendent Paciano Deloso said the stolen vehicles may have been sold by the group or used for their illegal activities.




http://news.abs-cbn.com/news/03/01/17/m ... ao-del-sur

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 03, 2017 12:36 am 
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PNP chief confirms failed assassination plot by Maute Group is drug-related
by UNTV News | Thursday, March 2nd, 2017



PNP Chief Ronald dela Rosa believes that the Maute terror group wants him dead because of his job.

“This Maute group is being fed by drug money then maybe they are hurt by the drug war. That’s my own opinion only,” he said.

This was after the PNP chief discovered an assassination plot against him following the arrest of a suspected member of the Maute group identified as Eyemen Alonte.

The information allegedly came from the one of the suspects involved in a carnapping who managed to survive, and the one authorities interrogated.

The foiled assassination happened on January 25 in Marawi City when he was the guest speaker at an event in his alma mater, the Mindanao State University (MSU).

Dela Rosa claims the group had planned to shoot him down or bomb his car. He said an IED was recovered inside the MSU campus the following day.

“There was one who was supposed to shoot me. That operation was supervised by one of the Maute groups who was there at the venue where I was supposed to go,” Said Dela Rosa.

He is thankful that the assassination plot failed and stresses that the incident will not stop him from fighting illegal drugs and terrorists.

“I am not afraid to die. Anytime I can die anytime. This is just work. They cannot deter me from doing my job,” he added. “I know the lord won’t leave me. God is always with me wherever I go.” — Grace Casin | UNTV News and Rescue




https://www.untvweb.com/news/pnp-chief- ... g-related/

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 03, 2017 9:16 am 
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Death toll in AFP-NPA clashes rises to 26 amid botched peace talks
By Eimor P. Santos, CNN Philippines
Updated 09:16 AM PHT Thu, March 2, 2017



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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines) — As the rest of the world celebrated the month of love in February, soldiers and communist rebels engaged in bloody skirmishes across the country.

At least 26 were killed in clashes between the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the New People's Army (NPA), just a month after the rebels announced on February 1 an end to their unilateral ceasefire.

There were 13 deaths from the rebels, 10 soldiers, and three civilians, according to CNN Philippines Research, in its own monitoring of rebel attacks and heightened military operations.

The death toll, which was at eight on February 10, almost tripled since February 11 - the day the rebels "completely terminated" their truce and promised to launch offensives against government troops.

The NPA in a statement admitted to conducting 30 attacks from February 1 to 10 alone. But these were only meant "to defend the rights and welfare of the people primarily against AFP troops occupying barangays and conducting strike operations," the rebels said.

The government has declared an "all-out war" against armed communist rebels after President Rodrigo Duterte's pronouncement that he now considers the country's biggest communist organization as a terrorist group. He was referring to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) along with its armed wing, the NPA, and political arm of the National Democratic Front (NDF).

Killed in armed conflict
Bloody combats and alleged rebel attacks have been reported by the military almost daily.

The Armed Forces said the NPA killed three soldiers in Bukidnon on February 1, despite declaring on that same day that their unilateral ceasefire still holds until February 10.

Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said this was the "last straw" that led to Duterte's withdrawal from the peace talks on February 4.

Suspected NPA rebels killed the platoon leader of the 67th Infantry Battalion in Manay, Davao Oriental, also on February 1, the military said.

While the actual number of casualties on the rebel side is unknown, the first death was reported on February 5, when an alleged rebel was killed in a firefight in Sta. Cruz, Occidental Mindoro.

The next day, authorities said an NPA supply officer, identified as Glenn Ramos, was killed in a shootout in Davao City as the police served his arrest warrant over attempted homicide. The CPP condemned the attack and said the military wrongly accused Ramos of being an NPA member who resisted arrest.

Meanwhile, a corporal died when an improvised explosive device (IED) went off as the troops encountered rebels in Tapaz, Capiz on February 7. Two other soldiers were wounded.

And civilians were not spared.

Lito Siagan Atoy was abducted then killed by NPA rebels in Talakag, Bukidnon on February 9, according to a military report.

On the same day, the rebels also captured a policeman and one other civilian, and burned heavy equipment owned by the Mindanao Rock Corporation, the military said.

Early Saturday morning on February 11, a soldier was killed in a clash in Santiago, Agusan del Norte which also claimed the lives of two civilians. Three other soldiers were wounded.

Four NPA rebels were killed in a firefight in Aroroy, Masbate on February 13.

Three consecutive encounters in Davao City on February 16 also resulted in the deaths of two soldiers and one rebel, while one rebel was killed in the municipality of Lakewood in Zamboanga del Sur on February 18. On February 21, another soldier was killed in Magpet, North Cotabato.

Two rebels were killed in Maayon, Capiz on February 24, two more died in an encounter in Davao del Norte on February 26, and one in Lian, Batangas the following day.

The latest fatality is a private first class who died in a clash with rebels in Sugbongcogon, Misamis Oriental on February 28.

While 25 other soldiers have been wounded from fighting the NPA, the actual number of casualties on the rebel side is unknown.

At least four government troops have been held captive by rebels since February 1, the military said.

The government is urging communist rebels to turn themselves in.

At least 65 have surrendered to authorities as of February 28, and a total of 17 have been arrested.

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NOTE: This is CNN Philippines' own monitoring of rebel attacks and heightened military operations against the New People's Army. The Armed Forces said eight soldiers, 16 rebels, and four civilians were killed from February 4 to 28.

CPP: Defeating the NPA a Duterte pipedream
In an earlier statement, the CPP said Duterte's bid to end their insurgency will fail, and advised him to rethink his decision to terminate the talks.

"Defeating the NPA is a Duterte pipedream. Other regimes before him have tried and failed," the CPP said.

Duterte should not have gone as far as ending the talks despite the resumption of armed conflict, CPP founder and now NDF chief political consultant Joma Sison said in a statement.

The NDF represents rebels in the peace talks.

Sison asked Duterte, his former student at the Lyceum of the Philippines University, "to consult thoroughly with his negotiating panel and the peace advocates in his own cabinet and others outside of his government, and encourage and allow back-channeling efforts to clarify misunderstandings and solve immediately the current problems."

The CPP condemned government's "all-out war" against the NPA. They said it mirrors Duterte's war on drugs, which the police and military say have claimed the lives of 2,500 drug offenders.

"The people's army, the NPA, will be at the people's side to punish the AFP's fascist troops at every available opportunity," the CPP added.


Botched peace talks
The Duterte government is the sixth administration to talk with the NDF in a bid to end the communist movement's armed struggle.

NPA rebels and government forces have figured in violent clashes for decades, including the 1987 "Mendiola Massacre," which killed 13 farmers after a bloody dispersal. This prompted the NDF to walk away from the talks under then President Corazon Aquino.

Negotiations went on and off in the succeeding administrations.

Duterte, a self-described left-leaning leader, brought renewed hope to a possible peace deal as he reached out to the rebels even before assuming presidency, launching an optimistic starts to the peace talks.

Presidential Spokesman Ernesto Abella on February 11 said Duterte may still reconsider his decision to bow out of the negotiations, but he said the rebels should show sincerity to the peace talks. This was followed by Duterte's meeting with leftist Cabinet members on the botched peace talks.

Meanwhile, Sison said the Norwegian government, which has been serving as third-party facilitator in the peace talks since the 1990s, deserves to be briefed by the government and communist peace panels on the possible continuance of peace talks.

The Royal Norwegian Embassy in Manila in a statement sent to CNN Philippines said it is "in close dialogue with both parties. We know from experience that all peace processes are going through challenging phases."

The fourth round of peace talks under the Duterte administration was supposed to resume in Oslo, Norway on April 2-6.





http://cnnphilippines.com/news/2017/03/ ... ation.html

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 03, 2017 9:19 am 
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Army discover NPA camps in Kalinga
Wednesday, March 01, 2017

PINUKPUK, Kalinga -- Army troopers recently discovered two camps of alleged New People’s Army (NPA) in the municipality of Balbalan after intensified combat operations that forced rebels to abandon their base.

Second Lieutenant Edgar Jeric Gonzales of the 50th Infantry Battalionsaid the first camp was discovered on February 14 at barangay Ab-abaan, Balbalan while the other was on Feb. 23 at Sitio Guin-ang, Dao-angan.

The discovery of the camps was based on tips from civilians who pinpointed the general vicinity where armed dissidents splintered into small groups to evade government soldiers.

The 50IB resumed the conduct of focused military operations in their area of responsibility following the lifting of the unilaterally-declared ceasefire on Feb. 4. Pres. Duterte directed the military to launch an all-out-war after the failed peace talk with the NDF-CPP-NPA.

Earlier, soldiers overran a rebel camp in a remote village in Asipulo town in Ifugao following a gun battle with the NPA.

Lieutenant Colonel Gulliver Señires, 50IB Commanding Officer, lamented the cancellation of the peace talk but said they will still pursue local peace talks provided the NPAs are sincere, present sensible terms, and the right people are involved.

While no peace talk is in the offing, Duterte’s all-out-war policy will be sustained with public assurance that human rights are respected, international humanitarian law and rules of engagement are observed, he assured.

Señires reiterated the call for NPA members including the ”Militia ng Bayan” to surrender and avail of the benefits under the Comprehensive Local Integration Program or CLIP.

CLIP offers P7,000 re-integration assistance; P15,000 immediate assistance; P50,000 livelihood, remuneration of surrendered firearm, and PhilHealth membership. (Peter Balocnit/PIA–CAR)

Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on March 02, 2017.


Read more: http://www.sunstar.com.ph/baguio/local- ... nga-528580
Follow us: @sunstaronline on Twitter | SunStar Philippines on Facebook

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 03, 2017 9:24 am 
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Abus still have 31 hostages
By Jaime Laude (The Philippine Star) | Updated March 3, 2017 - 12:00am

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The military has deployed thousands of troops in the Abu Sayyaf strongholds of Basilan, Tawi-Tawi and Jolo islands, yet despite air and ground offensives, the bandit group’s piracy and kidnappings continue unabated. AFP Westmincom, file

MANILA, Philippines - The Abu Sayyaf group that beheaded German hostage Juergen Kantner last Sunday is still holding 31 foreign and local hostages, the Department of National Defense (DND) said yesterday.

Director Arsenio Andolong, chief of the DND’s Public Affairs Service, said the bandits are still holding 12 Vietnamese, seven Indonesians, five Malaysians, a Dutchman and six Filipinos as hostages.

Andolong stressed military operations in rescuing the remaining hostages are being hampered by the support of civilian communities that the bandits have already established.

He said a good number of civilians and some dubious personalities in the province have been providing help to the bandits for financial considerations.

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The military has deployed thousands of troops in the Abu Sayyaf strongholds of Basilan, Tawi-Tawi and Jolo islands, yet despite air and ground offensives, the bandit group’s piracy and kidnappings continue unabated.

The bandits are entrenched in local communities, complicating operations by a military that is wary of incurring civilian casualties.

It is common knowledge that part of the hundreds of million in ransom money that the bandits have amassed from their criminal activities are being used by the group to buy the support and loyalty of civilians in the villages as well as key personalities in the province for protection.

Without this unholy alliance, the bandits would have long been decimated by the 14 battalions of soldiers deployed to track them down and rescue the hostages.

“Without going into details, they (Abu Sayyaf) have support structures among the public and this has to be addressed,” Andolong said.

Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana ordered the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) to implement a different approach to address the prevailing alliance between civilians and the Abu Sayyaf bandits.

Without elaborating, Andolong said the military actions against the bandits will henceforth be different.

“The defense chief is angry and sad because of what happened and he is taking this very personally. This thing happened under his watch and he, being a Maguindanaoan, is very serious about dealing with this problem,” Andolong said.

In a statement, Lorenzana vowed that the Abu Sayyaf, who he described as “animals,” will feel the wrath of the entire Filipino nation through the might of its armed forces.

Describing the execution of Kantner as the most heinous of crimes against humanity, Lorenzana assured the family of the victim that the full force of the military will be applied against the bandits. – With John Unson



http://www.philstar.com/headlines/2017/ ... 1-hostages

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