Latest Stories

AFP to lead drive vs illegal logging


Starting next year, the Department of National Defense (DND) and the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) will be at the forefront of the government’s campaign against illegal logging in Mindanao.

The anti-illegal logging task force (AILTF) has approved the reclassification of the campaign against illegal loggers in Mindanao as “active military operations” and dissolved existing civilian and retired military contingents of the task force, including the removal of retired general Renato Miranda as head of the AILTF Kalikasan.

Miranda, a retired marine major general who led a failed coup on February 2006 against then President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, had been previously tapped to head the anti-illegal task force Kalikasan, which was formed to crack down on illegal loggers in Mindanao.

There were previous insinuations that he had been conniving with big-time illegal loggers in the region but he had denied the allegations.

Military operation


At a press conference Thursday at the the Ninoy Aquino Parks and Wildlife Center, Environment and Natural Resources Secretary Ramon Paje announced a resolution of the AILTF to tap the military in spearheading the fight against illegal logging in Mindanao due to the presence of armed groups and insurgents and the increasing number of civilian casualties in the enforcement of the total log ban.

The AILTF, chaired by Paje, is composed of Interior and Local Government Secretary Manuel Roxas II, Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin, Philippine National Police Chief Nicanor Bartolome and AFP Chief of Staff General Jessie Dellosa.

In its resolution, the AILTF unanimously approved to convert into active military operations the previously civilian-led drive to rid Mindanao of illegal loggers and disbanded existing civilian and retired military contingents of the task force.

The resolution terminated the service contracts of all civilian and retired military contingents of the task force.

New strategies


Paje said that under the AILTF resolution, the defense department through the AFP will “lead all the anti-illegal operations in Mindanao, including but not limited to confiscation of illegally cut logs or lumber and the apprehension of violators.”

The environment secretary further said that the AILTF members and senior military officials agreed on Sept. 11 to modify strategies in the campaign against illegal loggers in Mindanao because of the presence of armed groups in the area.

Paje observed that 31 of the 197 illegal logging hotspots in the country are concentrated in the Caraga and Davao regions. He also noted the increasing risk to the lives of forest rangers in enforcing the total log ban in natural and residual forests under Executive Order 23 signed in February last year by President Aquino.

Paje noted that since the civilian contingent started the implementation of the executive order, it has had at least 25 casualties.

Apart from the military, the police has been tasked to arrest suspected illegal loggers for prosecution while the DENR would assign technical personnel to assist the AFP Mindanao operations.

His department, Paje added, would also provide the DND and the AFP with an operations manual detailing the guidelines on illegal logging operation, orientation and training.

Follow Us

Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter

Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: AFP , DND , environment , Government , Illegal Logging , Military , Mindanao

Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
  1. US teacher fired over comment on black president
  2. Enrile chief aide back in PH ‘to face charges’
  3. Filipinos, Dane re-enact crucifixion of Christ
  4. Magnitude-7.5 earthquake shakes Mexican capital
  5. Henares on Pacquiao bashing: I did not start this
  6. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  7. Massive infra spending set
  8. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  9. Easter crucifixions draw huge crowds
  10. Korea ferry captain arrested, divers spot bodies
  1. Kim Henares needs a reprimand, says Cayetano
  2. Suspect in Vhong Navarro mauling tries to leave PH
  3. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  4. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  5. ‘Mom, I love you,’ says text from student on sinking ferry
  6. Fr. Suarez says last Mass on Easter before returning donated land to San Miguel
  7. Enrile chief aide back in PH ‘to face charges’
  8. Massive infra spending set
  9. Henares on Pacquiao bashing: I did not start this
  10. I’ll follow my conscience on Estrada, says JV Ejercito
  1. KL confirms Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 ended in Indian Ocean
  2. MRT passengers pass the hat for 6-year-old Ashley
  3. Rookie, lady cops lauded for quick response to MOA heist
  4. Malaysia averts another air tragedy; pilot lands troubled plane safely
  5. Revilla says he was joking; Lacson stands by his story
  6. Revilla ‘consulted’ Lacson on how he evaded arrest
  7. Police rule out foul play in Helena Belmonte’s death as boyfriend is ‘traumatized’
  8. Cudia, dismissed for lying, got 99% in conduct
  9. Model Helena Belmonte wished ‘to slash her wrist and hope to die’
  10. Hammer-wielding robbers cause chaos at Philippines’ Mall of Asia


  • Holy fire ceremony draws thousands in Jerusalem
  • Tanchanco, former NFA head; 83
  • Pope seeks to bring faith to ‘ends of the Earth’
  • Meteor shower to light up PH skies
  • Positive in UAE, returning Filipino nurse tests negative
  • Sports

  • Pacquiao top Mayweather contender
  • Rain or Shine, Ginebra clash for No. 6 spot
  • Ateneo eyes quarterfinal spot vs Benilde
  • Style contrast marks OneFC ‘Rise of Heroes’
  • ‘Pacquiao a great ambassador for basketball’
  • Lifestyle

  • Noli Yamsuan, Cardinal Sin’s ‘official’ photographer: ‘I could smell the aftershave lotion of the Pope’
  • Simplifying and lightening life
  • Where to go for Easter night-out
  • Joe de Venecia visits the Queen Mother of Cambodia
  • Fashionistas flock to designer’s wedding
  • Entertainment

  • Why ‘Noah’ can’t dock his ark at Philippine theaters
  • Acclaimed artist goes wild while on holiday
  • Believing in this mermaid
  • Missing Xian
  • Awarded TV couple brings Jesus’ life to the big screen
  • Business

  • Top-selling insurance agent opens her dream café
  • Connecting and transacting with one another
  • Building wealth for health
  • Why Mandaue Foam buys, rather than rents, space
  • A workplace of new possibilities
  • Technology

  • Nasa’s moon-orbiting robot crashes down
  • Netizens pay respects to Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • Nokia recalls 30,000 chargers for Lumia 2520 tablet
  • Facebook rolls out ‘nearby friends’ feature
  • Netizens seethe over Aquino’s ‘sacrifice’ message
  • Opinion

  • Epiphany
  • Unpaid creditor vs distressed debtor
  • Moving on
  • From culinary desert to paradise
  • Response to China: ‘Usjaphil’
  • Global Nation

  • Asia seeks Obama’s assurance in territorial spats
  • Cesar Chavez movie sparks memories of Fil-Am labor leaders
  • Filipinos in US poised for success
  • Visas for priests and other faith leaders
  • DOH to continue tracking co-passengers of OFW infected with MERS virus
  • Marketplace