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Marcos denies Mamasapano probe whitewash in leaked meeting with Deles

/ 05:25 PM February 16, 2015
Sen. Bongbong Marcos speaks to the media after the weekly Kapihan sa Diamond Hotel on Monday. Aries Hegina/INQUIRER.net

Sen. Bongbong Marcos speaks to the media after the weekly Kapihan sa Diamond Hotel on Monday. Aries Hegina/INQUIRER.net

MANILA, Philippines – Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. on Monday denied that a leaked meeting with Presidential Peace Adviser Teresita Deles was intended to whitewash the Senate probe on the Mamasapano incident.

Speaking during the weekly Kapihan sa Diamond Hotel event, Marcos said that the intention of the meeting with Deles, which transpired a day after police commandos clashed with Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) fighters last Jan. 25, was to determine the next steps of the government following the incident.

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“The agenda of the said meeting was to ask ‘what really happened’ and ‘how do we move forward’ (after the Mamasapano clash),” Marcos said.

During that meeting, Marcos asked Deles to obtain the side of the MILF, police, and the military on what happened in the botched operation, which killed 44 members of the PNP-Special Action Force, 18 MILF fighters, and five civilians.

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“What we talked about was clear. ‘Ano na ang gagawin natin?’ Ganon ang sinabi ko sa kanya. ‘How do we move this forward?’ Because this is something that happened and the main point why I talked to Sec. Deles was to ask ‘Nasaan si (MILF) Chairman (Mohagher) Iqbal? Kailangan siyang magpakita, kailangan nating pag-usapan ito at ipag-explain natin ang magkabila: for the MILF to explain what is going on and the PNP-SAF and the AFP to explain what happened to them,” the senator said.

(“What we talked about was clear. ‘What should we do?’ That’s what I told her. ‘How do we move this forward?’ Because this is something that happened and the main point why I talked to Sec. Deles was to ask ‘Where is [MILF] Chairman [Mohagher] Iqbal? He should appear because we need to talk and let both sides explain what happened: for the MILF to explain what is going on and the PNP-SAF and the AFP to explain what happened to them.”)

In a report published in The Manila Times last Feb. 14, Deles was reportedly heard in the leaked conversation “passionately” defending the MILF “in an apparent bid to save the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL)” to Marcos and that the SAF troopers “walked into their own doom.”

The BBL is currently pending in the Senate local government committee chaired by Marcos.

Meanwhile, the senator decried the security breach following the incident.

“Suddenly, you don’t feel secured in your office. Hindi naman puwede ‘yun. (It should not be the case.) Because how can you conduct your business in government in that kind of atmosphere?” he lamented.

The Senate hearing on the Mamasapano incident started on Feb. 9, 13 days after the reported meeting between Marcos and Deles.

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TAGS: Audio Tape, Bong Bong Marcos, Mamasapano, SAF, Teresita Deles
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