AFP denies torching Lumad schools in Mindanao
The Armed Forces of the Philippines on Friday dared its accusers to prove the “preposterous and malicious allegations” that they were burning down schools for indigenous peoples or Lumads in Mindanao.
“We challenge our accusers. Provide details which schools, where, and when the alleged acts committed,” said AFP spokesperson Col. Edgard Arevalo in a statement.
He said the accusations are “serious allegations” and challenged them to file appropriate charges in court.
“We have inquired from our units in the Eastern Mindanao Command and 10ID. The reports categorically state that no such forcible closing of schools or burning was committed by the AFP as alleged,” Arevalo said.
The spokesperson said that this is another disinformation campaign of the New People’s Army and are meant to malign the reputation and discredit the AFP.
Indigenous groups from Mindanao and other regions forwarded cases of atrocities to the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Rights of the Indigenous Peoples.
Indigenous groups have accused government forces of killing eight Lumads in South Cotabato, harassment and destruction of facilities, and the closure of schools. /muf
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