Menardo: DOJ prepared to probe attack on NUPL officer Guillen
MANILA, Philippines — Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra said the Department of Justice is prepared to conduct an investigation on the attack against human rights lawyer Angelo Karlo “AK” Guillen.
Guillen, a member of the National Union of Peoples’ Lawyers (NUPL) was stabbed in the head Wednesday evening. An initial report from the police said it was a robbery.
But his colleagues from NUPL and co-petitioners on the Anti-Terrorism petition before the Supreme Court believed the attack was related to the cases he is handling.
Guillen is handling the case of the Tumandoks, an indigenous people’s community that was subject of a police operation. Some of its members were arrested late last year while a key witness was killed days after Guillen was attacked.
A congressional inquiry is being called pushed by the Makabayan bloc.
A report from NUPL-Panay said Guillen is already in stable condition.
“The screwdriver has been removed from his head,” NUPL President Edre Olalia said, relaying the news coming from NUPL-Panay.
Guevarra said they will wait for Guillen to issue a statement if he believed that the motive behind the attack is related to his advocacies,
“We’ll wait for Atty. Guillen to make a statement about the incident. If he has good reason to believe that it’s related to his advocacies, I will refer the matter to the AO 35 task force for appropriate action,” Guevarra said.
AO 35 refers to theInter-Agency Committee on Extra-Legal Killings, Enforced Disappearances, Torture and Other Grave Violations to the Rights to Life, Liberty, and Security of Persons. The DOJ is part of the inter-agency committee.
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