AFP denies using children in operations

A+
A
A-

Military spokesman Brig. Gen. Domingo Tutaan: Surprised. PHOTO/A2C Bryan Bautista/ AFP PAO

MANILA, Philippines—Surprised by a United Nations report that said it was among the armed groups in the country that used children in their operations, the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) reiterated it was not its policy to endanger the lives of children in conflict zones.

Military spokesman Brig. Gen. Domingo Tutaan said Tuesday that according to the UN report, it was the Abu Sayyaf, Moro Islamic Liberation Front and New People’s Army that “were considered persistent perpetrators” because they had been reported to have recruited and used children in situations of armed conflict for the past five years.

Tutaan said it was actually the military that initiated an investigation into the allegation that the Army’s 56th Infantry Battalion had forced two boys to serve as guides to help find an NPA camp in North Cotabato in July 2012.

The military, he said, found that the battalion had not committed an infraction.

Tutaan assured the public the military would not use children in its security operations.

“We are 101-percent committed to preventing the use and exploitation of children in armed conflict,” Tutaan told reporters.—Nikko Dizon

Disclaimer: The comments uploaded on this site do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of management and owner of INQUIRER.net. We reserve the right to exclude comments that we deem to be inconsistent with our editorial standards.

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