Napeñas denies SAF fired first shot
Video by Ryan Leagogo/INQUIRER.net
Sacked Special Action Force (SAF) commander Getulio Napeñas belied the report by the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) that the first shot that sparked the 12-hour gun battle that marred the “Oplan Exodus” in Mamasapano town, Maguindanao came from the police commandos.
During the House of Representatives’ hearing on the Jan. 25 Mamasapano debacle Tuesday, Napeñas also disputed the findings of a report by the MILF that the Moro group only acted on self-defense when the SAF commandos opened fire.
Napeñas said the first explosion came not from SAF but from an improvised explosive device (IED) planted around the hut of international terrorist Zulkifli Bin Hir alias Marwan, who was the subject of the antiterror raid that went wrong due to lack of coordination.
“Based on the accounts of the team leader, ang unang pumutok ay yung improvised explosive device (IED) na nakatanim sa paligid ng kubo ni Marwan,” Napeñas said.
He however said there is no other evidence to prove this other than the testimony of the lone SAF survivor Christopher Lalan.
Napeñas also countered the MILF report saying Marwan was sleeping in the hut before the SAF commandos sneaked in and killed the high-value target terrorist.
“Hindi po ako pwedeng maniwala dyan. The fact na pumutok ang IED, hindi posibleng hindi magising sa putok dun,” Napeñas said.
Napeñas also denied that the incident was a “misencounter” and instead said it was clearly a “massacre.”
“Pinakita sa forensic examination na binaril nang malapitan. Buhay pa nung pinakita sa (viral) video. Massacre yun, your Honor,” Napeñas said.
The botched Jan. 25 antiterror raid succeeded in killing Marwan but ended in the deaths of 44 SAF commandos, 18 MILF fighters and five civilians. AC
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