Quote for the Week..

"Why are the country’s political leaders quick to act on amending the Constitution to change nationalistic provisions for the benefit of foreigners or to extend their terms of office but are allergic to amending the Constitution to address the people’s aspirations for self-determination?" - Marvic Leonen,Dean of the UP College of Law, in a keynote address delivered at the 1st International Solidarity Conference on Mindanao; March 16-18, 2009 in Davao City, Philippines.


Saturday, February 9, 2008

Sulu killings: "massacre, no legitimate encounter" say human rights investigators

By Julie S. Alipala

Ms. Sandrawina Wahid, whose vacationing soldier-husband was among those killed, told reporters in Sulu on Tuesday that she saw four US soldiers among Filipino troopers who stormed Barangay Ipil in Maimbong, Sulu.

Jose Manuel Mamauag, director of the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) in Western Mindanao, said Wahid was consistent in her account about the participation of US soldiers in the raid on Ipil.

Mamauag said Wahid had already submitted a sworn statement on it. “After her husband was shot before her eyes, she was brought to a Navy boat where she saw the four US soldiers. She also claimed that the raiding soldiers looted their village because she recognized her neighbors’ animals,” he said.

“We are aware it’s Wahid’s words against the interests of the Americans, but it’s executed through an affidavit and we are standing by her statement,” Mamauag added. He said the CHR investigation of the Maimbung massacre also found that the soldiers “used heavy armaments.”

The burning of at least seven houses by the soldiers, as attested to by residents, also bolstered reports of abuses, Mamauag said.

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