New People’s Army
Valentin Palamine Regional Operations Command
Far South Mindanao
Press Statement | February 8, 2017
The Mt. Alip Sub-Regional Operations Command of the New People’s Army in Far South Mindanao captured and held as Prisoners of War (POWs) two 39th IB-Philippine Army troopers at around 7:00 am of February 2 in Brgy. Telafas, Colombio, Sultan Kudarat province.
The two POWs are Sgt. Solaiman Calocop, 46, serial number 819608 and Pfc. Samuel Garay, 28, serial number 901760. Both soldiers are members of the Peace and Development Outreach Program team based in Brgy. Datal Blao, Colombio.
The NPA custodial force has treated them well in accordance with the provisions of the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law (CARHRIHL) and the NPA regulations.
POW Calocop and POW Garay are currently under investigation for their involvement in the crimes perpetrated by the 39th IB against the people and against the revolutionary movement. If probative evidence is established to link either or both of them, appropriate case will be filed at the People’s Court or at the NPA’s military court.
The arrest of the two POWs was undertaken as an active defense action against the 39th IB that is responsible for the massive counter-revolutionary operations and attacks in various communities in Cotabato.
Even while the GRP’s own unilateral ceasefire declaration was still in effect, the 39th IB committed grave violations of human rights and the international humanitarian law that include the following:
Establishment of military detachments in the civilian villages of Brgy. Asbang, Matanao, Davao Sur and in Brgy. Datal Blao, Colombio, Sultan Kudarat;
- Psy-war and harassment of civilians being accused as supporters of the revolutionary movement;
- Food blockade and restriction in the economic activities of the peasants and Lumad;
- Regular combat operations in areas that sow fear among civilians and gravely affect their activities.
- The 39th IB carried out offensive action against an NPA unit doing mass work in Matalam, North Cotabato.
The aggressive counter-insurgency attack of the AFP through the PDOP is undeniable. It targets and forcefully neutralizes suspected supporters and sympathizers of the revolutionary movement. It also fortifies their intelligence network as an integral component of their TRIAD operations of civic-military operations, combat and intelligence operations.
The PDOP’s necessary mission is to carry out AFP offensives by locating NPA units they target for armed attacks. Even during their 6-month long unilateral ceasefire, AFP combat troops have been forward deployed against the NPA units across the country.
The incessant military operations of the AFP under the then Enhanced Oplan Bayanihan and the present Oplan Kapayapaan in many civilian communities across the country are a devilish ploy dressed up as peace and development program. Oplan Kapayapaan is a fascist counterinsurgency campaign devised to sabotage the Filipino people’s desire for a genuine, just and lasting peace.
(Sgd.) KA DENCIO MADRIGAL
Spokesperson, Valentin Palamine Command
New People’s Army Regional Operations Command