200 Caramoan residents evacuate
The Philippine Air Force’s aerial bombardment and strafing of communities in Barangay Lidong, Caramoan, Camarines Sur last August 13 resulted in the evacuation of more than 200 individuals.
To justify the attack, the fascists made it appear that there had been an encounter between the 83rd IB and Red fighters in the area. This claim was, however, belied by National Democratic Front-Bicol spokesperson Ka Ma. Roja Banua.
Last August 14, 18 families were reported to have evacuated from the towns of Lopez, Macalelon, Catanauan and Agdangan in Quezon Province. The farmers were demanding an increase in the farmgate prices of copra and whole coconut. They were summoned to a military camp and coerced to surrender as NPA members.
More than 100 soldiers of the 26th IB encamped in residents’ houses, clinic, and corn mills in a Lumad community at Sityo Simowao, Diatagon, Lianga, Surigao del Sur last August 16. The residents opposed the occupation as this engenders fear and disrupts the harvest season. Lumads from Tubod, Bolhoon, San Miguel also reported that their community has been occupied by the military since August 17.
Elements of the 20th IB reentered Barangay Capotoan in Las Navas town, Northern Samar on August 12. They segregated 143 men and women from their children. They were then interrogated and threatened to be killed. Seven other residents were isolated, detained for a few hours, and were separately interrogated and threatened. Soldiers continue to occupy civilian infrastructures in the community.
Abduction in Samar. Elements of the 43rd IB abducted Nario Lagrimas, a farmer and resident of E. Duran, Bobon, Northern Samar, along with his companion last August 8. His companion was released few hours later, but Lagrimas is still missing up to the present.
Harassment in Mindanao. Men armed with high-powered rifles looked for Pedro Arnado, national officer of the Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas, in his residence in Davao City on August 20.
In Cagayan de Oro City, two elements of the 1st SFB in plainclothes went to the residence of Kadamay-Northern Mindanao Chairperson Francisco “Iko” Pagayaman, 63, in Barangay Carmen, Cagayan de Oro City and asked for his whereabouts.
Illegal detention. Despite the dismissal on July 30 of the illegal possesion of firearms and explosives charge against Alexander and Winona Birondo, staff of the NDFP negotiating panel, the couple are yet to be released by the police. They were arrested without a warrant by the police last July 23 in Barangay Maribio, San Francisco del Monte, Quezon City and were subsequently detained at Camp Caringal. Both are suffering from diabetes.