74th IB summarily kills Northen Samar peasant

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Wanton shooting from soldiers of the 74th IB killed farmer Pido Mendes in Barangay San Jose, Mapanas, Northern Samar on November 22. This military unit, under the command of BGen Noel Vestuir of 802nd Bde, was then at the midst of a focused military operation.

From 2013, Mendes, 60, has been pursued by soldiers after he escaped the 34th IB’s capture. He has since been living in his farm in the countryside to avoid the soldiers.

Arrest. After staging a fake encounter, 94th IB soldiers arrested farmer Pokoy Rebradilla, along with his son, in Sityo Karanawan-Buli, Barangay Buenavista, Himamaylan City, Negros Occidental on December 7. He was subjected to torture and illegally detained in its camp in Barangay Tambo, Ayungon, Negros Oriental.

Abduction. Two pregnant hors de combat fighters of the New People’s Army (NPA)-Southeast Negros were abducted on December 18 and presented as “surrenderers” on December 18 by the 11th IB. Picked up in Siaton, Negros Oriental, they are currently being kept incomunicado by the military.

Militarization. The 62nd IB poured hundreds of military troops in Binalbagan and neighboring towns in Negros Occidental since December 9. Its purpose is to silence and suppress the relatives and residents in their call for justice for Braulio “Banny” Tubalado who was killed by soldiers last December 6.

More than 100 62nd IB soldiers are conducting operations in Sityo Sunflower in Barangay Santol and Sitio Tambo, Barangay Amuntay in Binalbagan. Soldiers forcibly evacuated 15 families from Sityo Karanawan, Barangay Amuntay on December 9. Up to 100 people along with their children were affected by this forced evacuation.

Harassment. The US-Marcos regime arbitrarily detained and deported Edna Becher, Filipina-Swiss activist and chairwoman of Anakbayan-Switzerland, on December 7. She was detained for more than two hours at the NAIA Terminal 3 before being forcibly deported to Switzerland. She was “blacklisted” due to her alleged “anti-government activities.” Becher was one of the activists who protested when Marcos Jr. went to Switzerland last January.

In Bicol, the 903rd IBde harassed Reynard Magtoto, a member of the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines and Baretang Bikolnon journalist.

Meanwhile, on December 18, two mass leaders in Cebu were granted bail in a frustrated homicide case filed by the military. John Ruiz III, coordinator of Bayan Muna Central Visayas, and Jhonggie Rumol paid their bails after learning of the case involving them in the armed encounter between the NPA and the AFP in Toboso, Negros Occidental last April.

74th IB summarily kills Northen Samar peasant