Arrest of communist leader ‘illegal’ – human rights group
HUMAN rights group Karapatan blasted the supposed “illegal” arrest of communist leader Adelberto Silva, claiming that he is a peace consultant of the National Democratic Front of the Philippines negotiating with the government.
In a statement, Karapatan said that the arrest was a “serious violation of the signed agreements between the two parties.”
Silva was arrested last Monday in Bacoor by joint security forces. He was said to have taken over the New People’s Army leadership after the arrest of top leaders Benito and Wilma Tiamzon last year.
Cristina Palabay, Karapatan Secretary General said Silva is a holder of the Joint Agreement on Safety and Immunity Guarantees. He assumed the name of “Percival Rojo.”
Army spokesperson Lt. Col. Noel Detoyato confirmed that Silva had used the name Percival Rojo in one of his identification cards.
Karapatan said Silva is a consultant of Kilusang Mayo Uno and his wife, Rosanna Cabusao, is a researcher/consultant of the Crispin B. Beltran Resource Center and a founding member of Gabriela.
The arrest of Silva “shows how the GPH continues to undermine the peace process by disregarding the JASIG and the Comprehensive Agreement on the Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law (CARHRIHL) because of the trumped up charges filed against peace consultants,” Palabay said.
There are 16 NDFP consultants arrested and are still detained, Karapatan said.
Armed Forces public affairs office chief Lt. Col. Harold Cabunoc said that Silva is facing criminal cases and it was “surprising” that he is identified as a peace consultant.
“They could not prove that they are indeed listed in the JASIG protected personalities as they could not present any evidence to prove his claim,” he said.
The military said Silva has a warrant of arrest for 15 counts of murder. He was also tagged in the Inopacan attack in Leyte, which killed about 400 people in 1985. AC