Cops nabbed medics in violent US Embassy dispersal, says injured protester
One of the protesters injured in an anti-American rally in front of the US Embassy in Manila recounted her experience from the violent dispersal.
In a video uploaded by Gabriela Rep. Arlene Brosas, Piya Macliing Malayao, lead convenor of national minority alliance Sandugo, said policemen prevented medical personnel from getting near injured protesters, which delayed first-aid response.
“Hinahatak ng pulis…tapos ang tagal naming naghatakan, mga pito kaming magkakayap. ‘Yung mga medic pilit silang hinuhuli ng mga pulis. ‘Yung isa sa kanila binigyan na ng posas, kaya natagalan din bago bigyan ng first-aid kasi ayaw kaming tantanan ng mga pulis,” said Malayao, who was rushed to the Philippine General Hospital for treatment.
(The police kept on pulling us out. There were seven of us being pulled out by the police. They tried to arrest the medic. One of the medics was given handcuffs, that’s why it took them so long to administer first-aid because the police won’t stop.)
“Ang gusto nila kunin nila kami, isasakay kami sa police mobile. Magtitiwala pa ba kami pagkatapos nila kaming harasin? Ang assertion namin meron kaming mga doctor, may mga nakapalibot sa akin na isang doctor tapos may kasama siyang tatlong medic, lahat sila niligpit ng mga pulis dinala sa MPD (Manila Police District). Ako lang sinakay sa ambulansya,” she added.
(What they wanted was to haul us into a police mobile. Can we trust them after they harassed us? Our assertion was we have doctors. One doctor and three medics were protecting me. All of them were brought to the MPD. I was the only one brought to an ambulance.)
Malayao was one of at least three protesters hit by a police patrol car that forced its way through the crowd, as shown by video footages. Two others were injured by the vehicle, while several others were hurt from the scuffle that saw use of teargas and water cannons.
Malayao said the protest’s last speaker had yet to finish speaking when police forces in front of the embassy gate started moving forward, which was immediately followed by the vehicle incident.
“Mine-maintain po namin na nasa hanay kami dahil patapos na nga po ‘yung programa. Pagkatapos po noon, nagpaandar na po nang mabilis ‘yung police mobile. ‘Yun na po ‘yung maraming nasagasaan, kasi hindi po bababa sa apat na beses siyang nag-atras abante,” she said.
Metro Manila police Chief Supt. Oscar Albayalde denied the allegations and turned the blame on the protesters, saying they were “trying to flip over the police car.”
The groups, comprised mostly of minority alliances, were protesting against foreign intervention in support of the administration’s independent foreign policy. Militant leader Renato Reyes Jr. earlier said at least 21 individuals were arrested and brought to the MPD following the dispersal. TVJ
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.