NPA to launch more attacks vs plantations in Bukidnon, Misamis Oriental
CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Philippines – The recent burning of farm equipment in Bukidnon and Misamis Oriental by the New People’s Army (NPA) was just the start of a series of attacks by communist rebels in the coming months, the NPA itself said.
Allan Juanito, spokesperson of the NPA North Central Mindanao Regional Command, said in a statement that the assaults were just the beginning of the campaign against several companies, especially the Del Monte Philippines Inc. (DMPI).
“The time has come that they can no longer do as they wish, for their plantations are surrounded by the revolutionary forces who are ready to put a stop to their deeds. The attack on them is just the first step in demanding a payback for their social debt, which is already piling up,” Juanito said.
The Armed Forces of the Philippines has accused the NPA, the fighting forces of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP), of violating an accord signed by the Philippine government and the National Democratic Front (NDF), the CPP’s political, negotiating arm. For setting on fire properties owned by Dole Philippines, Inc., DMPI, and Lapanday Foods Corp., the NPA has violated provisions of the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law (CARHRIHL), the military said over the weekend.
“This is a grave violation of CARHRIHL which clearly states that civilian population and together with their property shall not be the object of the attack,” said Capt. Joe Patrick Martinez, spokesperson of the Army’s 4th Infantry Division (4ID) based here.
The agreement also stipulated that private properties would be protected from arson, strafing, and other similar forms of destroying lives and property, Martinez said.
On Jan. 26, NPA guerrillas torched a bulldozer, an owner-type jeep and a generator set inside the 25-hectare pineapple plantation owned by a Leo Woo, said to be a contractor for the DMPI, in Sitio Kitanglad, Barangay San Juan, Balingasag town, Misamis Oriental. Damage was placed at P15 million.
A few days later, rebels launched series of coordinated attacks in the compounds of Dole Philippines, Lapanday and DMPI in various locations in Malaybalay City. SFM
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