Baby Rhea's happy homecoming

This article is available in PilipinoBisaya

The Rebita family was ecstatic when Baby Rhea, the 3-month-old baby held hostage by the 402nd Ibde to force her parents, both Red fighters to surrender, was returned home. Baby Rhea was born on October 12, 2022 and has yet to meet her relatives.

The baby was returned to her family along a highway on December 29, 2022, at 5 p.m. An anonymous woman brought her. Two days earlier, her parents aired video-taped appeals over social media to surface her.

Baby Rhea is the daughter of Cherilyn Rebita (Ka Jan) and Ka Logan, fighters under the New People’s Army command in North Central Mindanao. Their statements were released along with the appeal of other victims of the 402nd IBde’s violations of the international humanitarian law. They directed their demand specifically to Colonel Adonis Ariel Orio, commander of the 402nd IBde and its agents Armando Rabanes (Anton/Dagat), Jonathan Bautista, Jeffrey Munez and a certain Ondoy. The Red fighters made it clear that they had no intention of surrendering and causing harm to the people’s army and the masses, as the military compelled them to do.

Apart from Baby Rhea, there are other children in other parts of the country whose basic rights have been violated by the military on suspicion of being a “child of the NPA.” One of them is 4-year-old “RJ,” who was kidnapped by the 203rd IBde and 41st IB from his caregivers in Occidental Mindoro in 2021. RJ was the son of health worker Emilia Marquez who was arrested in 2017.

Baby Rhea's happy homecoming