MANILA

Communists condemn Duterte, PNP over killing of consultants

THE communist National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) has condemned the Duterte administration and the Philippine National Police (PNP) over the killing of two NDFP consultants during a police operation in November in Angono, Rizal.

The NDFP denied the claim of the police that the couple, Eugenia Magpantay and Agaton Topacio, both 69, engaged the police in a gunfight as the latter raided their residence at dawn.

“Comrades Eugenia Magpantay and Agaton Topacio, both 69 years old, had retired and were convalescing in the past years. Both suffered from diabetes. Comrade Eugenia Magpantay recently suffered a stroke, which rendered her comatose for four days. Comrade Agaton Topacio was in pain for heart enlargement, knee injury and frozen shoulder,” the NDFP said in a statement on Wednesday, December 2, 2020.

“The police claim that the couple resisted arrest and were killed in a firefight. In their physical condition, they could not have handled the many weapons found on the scene, much less, engage in a firefight,” it added.

The group said the execution of Magpantay and Topacio was similar to the murders of NDFP consultants in the peace negotiations, Randall Echanis, Julius Giron and Randy Malayao.

The group accused the administration of violating the Joint Agreement on Safety and Immunity Guarantees (Jasig) of 1995 which guarantees all participants in the peace negotiations safety and immunity from detention, arrests and murder.

President Rodrigo Duterte has scrapped the peace negotiations with the NDFP.

The group also accused the government of violating the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law of 1998.

On Monday, November 30, 2020, Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief Debold Sinas dismissed the allegation of the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army (CPP-NPA) that the police executed the couple.

Sinas said the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group of the Calabarzon police merely implemented the search warrants against the couple last November 25 for alleged violations of the Republic Act 10591 or the Illegal Possession of Explosives.

The warrants of arrest for homicide and murder cases were also implemented against them, Sinas said.

“These two are not just ordinary couples. They are hardened terrorists and based on the findings after the operation, they were deeply involved in the underground movement,” said Sinas.

"Pag sinabi ng mga terorista na hindi manlaban, sa kanila 'yun. We are open for any investigations naman and these two, accordingly, ay napagalaman namin are not just ordinary couple. They are hardened terrorists... Ang paglaban ay hindi sa tanda, wala sa tanda 'yan," he added.

The PNP Internal Affairs Service will conduct a motu proprio investigation on the incident.

Sinas also urged the CPP-NPA to file a case if they have any evidence to prove their claim.

“IAS ay mag motu proprio investigate po niyan. Now kung kiniclaim ng CPP-NPA na kung anong bagay-bagay we will not react on that. That is just their allegation. If they want, they could always file a case in court kung meron po tayong ebidensya. Kung wala buti pa tumahimik na lang tayo,” he said. (SunStar Philippines)


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