QC cops to Muslim leaders: Let’s talk
MANILA, Philippines—The high command of the Quezon City Police District is seeking a dialogue with leaders of local Muslim settlements, following recent attacks on police officers in these communities and persisting complaints that they serve as hideouts for drug dealers.
QCPD director Chief Supt. Mario dela Vega said this will be the next step following his meeting on Tuesday with the Quezon City Muslim Consultative Council headed by retired Supt. Jameel Jaymalin.
Quezon City has about 25 mosques and four Muslim communities, namely Barangays Culiat, Fairmont, Payatas, and Sta. Monica, according to Dela Vega.
“We wanted the help of the organization in preserving peace and order in their respective areas and communities,” the police official said.
In December last year, a policeman died in an operation against illegal firecracker store owners in Fairmont. Early this month, another police officer who was waiting for his daughter was mauled and shot dead by a group of men in Barangay Culiat.
Dela Vega noted, during Tuesday’s meeting, members of the Muslim council have expressed their displeasure over reports that drug traders had been seeking refuge in their communities to avoid arrest.
Tuesday’s meeting was QCPD’s first with the local Muslim community under Dela Vega’s watch.
“It’s time to have a dialogue to preserve peace and order as well as to review the organizational set-up in these communities,” he said.
Dela Vega said QCPD plans to hold a dialogue with the Muslims at least once a month. Julie M. Aurelio
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