Army replaces troops in B'laan tribe killings
MANILA, Philippines - Troops from the Army's 39th infantry battalion (IB) have replaced soldiers involved in the B'laan killings in Davao del Sur who belonged to the 27th infantry battalion.
The turnover of command took place on Monday, November 5, at 9 am and was presided over by 10th Infantry Division (ID) commanding general Maj Gen Ariel B Bernardo in the division headquarters in Tupi, South Cotabato, according to Maj Jake Obligado, chief of the 10th ID’s Civil-Military Operations Battalion.
The newly assigned company at Kiblawan-Tampakan-Columbio, where the wife and two children of an anti-mining indigenous rebel were killed by military troops in October 18, is now under the 39th IB commanded by Lt Col Shalimar Imperial.
Imperial was the former intelligence officer of the 10th ID.
The former commander of the 27th IB, Lt Col Alexis Bravo, resigned over the weekend following an Army decision to subject 13 of his men, led by company commander Lt Dante Jimenez, to military trial for tactical lapses in their operation against anti-mining rebel Daguil Capion.
Jimenez was relieved from his post pending the results of the court martial proceedings. The implicated troops could face life in jail if found guilty of the killings. They are now restricted in the 10th ID headquarters in Mawab, Compostela Valley.
Killed on October 18 were Capion's 27-year-old wife Juvy and their sons Pop, 13, and John, 8.
Commission on Human Rights chair Loretta Ann Rosales, who has initiated a separate probe, earlier described the shooting incident as "gross irresponsibility" on the part of government troops.
National Commission on Indigenous Peoples chair Zenaida Brigida Pawid, who has also conducted a separate investigation, initially said "there's no doubt that human rights violations were committed" in the incident. - Rappler.com