Violent demolition in Angeles City injures seven

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Seven residents of Sitio Balubad, Barangay Anunas, Angeles City, Pampanga were injured on March 12 as a result of indiscrimate firing of police officers. The police acted as security forces for the demolition crew of the Clark Hills Properties Corporation that rammed through the residents’ barricade. The combined forces of police and thugs numbered 500. More than 500 households are affected by the demolition plan in the 72-hectare land being seized by the company. An estimated 2,000 residents are victims of land grabbing.

State forces and thugs violently demolished houses near the barricade and forced their way into the village entries. Confronted by the residents’ resistance, the police opened fire, hitting seven residents in their chests and legs. They also threatened two journalists who were reporting on the violence.

The next day, thugs attacked the sitio again and broke house windows.

Bombing. The AFP dropped at least 22 aerial bombs on communities in Abra from February 25 to February 27. This was followed by shelling and strafing by soldiers that hit near the residents’ fish ponds, pastures and crops. It affected the areas between barangays Bazar, Sallapadan and Barangay Bulbulala, Licuan-Baa.

In Bukidnon, 10th ID troops again shelled areas in Valencia City, on March 10, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The AFP fired 18 bombs using 105 howitzers stationed in Sitio Bulakaw, Barangay Concepcion in the said city.

Shooting. The 2nd IB opened fire in Sitio Cayang, Barangay Liong, Cataingan, Masbate on March 11 to stage a fake “encounter” with the New People’s Army (NPA). The military intimidated and even forced barangay officials to sign a certification testifying that a battle occurred in the area.

Illegal detention and deportation. Filipino activist Marikit Saturay was arbitrarily detained and forcibly deported to The Netherlands when she visited the Philippines on March 7 to attend her grandmother’s birthday. The Bureau of Immigration (BI) detained her for three nights at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) before forcibly deporting her to her country of origin. The BI claims her to be in a “blacklist order” due to her participation in “anti-government activities.”

Pressure. State forces have been relentlessly intimidating and harassing the family of the NPA Red fighters who were martyred in Bilar, Bohol on February 23. The police repeatedly visited the family of martyr Perlito Historia in the past few weeks to force them to withdraw their planned autopsy of the victim’s remains. The police tried to bribe Historia’s family and threatened them when they refused.

Violation of workers’ rights. Technol Eight Philippines Workers Union (TEPWU)-OLALIA-KMU leader Mario Fernandez was again harassed on March 9. The incident is believed related to their upcoming negotiations for a new collective bargaining agreement (CBA). He suffered the same ordeal in 2022.

Meanwhile, the company Profood International Corporation neglected its worker Isidro Rosell, 62, who suffered an accident at the Mandaue Plant in Barangay Maguikay, Mandaue City, Cebu. Rosell has been working for the company for eighteen years. On February 20, he accidentally fell off the truck when he was hauling cocoshells from the factory. It caused a blood clot in his brain. The company refused to give support.

Violent demolition in Angeles City injures seven