Rebels justify Negros Occidental ambush
BACOLOD, Philippines - The National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) justified on Sunday, February 10, the recent ambush by New People’s Army (NPA) rebels that killed 9 people in Negros Occidental.
NDFP chairman Luis Jalandoni said that the rebels, who allegedly tried to disarm policemen and paramilitaries in La Castellana, Negros Occidental, attacked "a legitimate target."
"The NPA was able to capture high-powered rifles, among the firearms, proving that the principal passengers and the vehicle were a legitimate target of the NPA," he added in a statement.
The January 27 ambush, described as a "massacre" by authorities, claimed the lives of 9 people, including a policeman, and injured 10 civilians and two policemen.
Jalandoni said that government, civil and military officials are “lying” for claiming that even the paramilitaries are civilian, apparently referring to members of the Barangay Peacekeeping Action Team.
He stressed that the police and military are responsible for commandeering the driver and truck, and taking the civilians hostage.
'Rebels manning checkpoint'
Jalandoni also vehemently debunked claims that passengers was deliberately shot in the head, as the police investigation showed.
“This is a blatant lie of government, civil and military officials for psywar (psychological war) effect,” he explained.
Jalandoni insisted that the NPA unit was manning a checkpoint and a warning shot was fired for the truck driver to stop.
But the police and paramilitary personnel shot back at the rebels, triggering the firefight.
Jalandoni said that government, military and police officials are the ones guilty of war crimes for issuing high-powered rifles and other firearms to paramilitaries, and not the 20 NPA members charged by the Negros Occidental Provincial Prosecutors Office.
The rebels offered humanitarian assistance to the victims and their families, but the families rejected the help, arguing they just want justice. - Rappler.com