CPP honors martyrs of Rosario, Batangas

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The Regional Committee of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) in Southern Tagalog paid tribute to the fighters of the New People’s Army (NPA)-Batangas (Eduardo Dagli Command) who fell in the attack of the 59th IB on March 26 in Barangay Elvita (Tubahan), Rosario, Batangas. Among the martyrs is Junalice Arante-Isita (Ka Arya), leading cadre of the revolutionary movement in Batangas who also served as a member of the Party committee in the region. Bernardo Bagaas (Ka Mamay/Mike) and Erickson Cueto (Ka Ricky/Vale) were also killed in action.

Ka Arya is from Lipa City, Batangas and was first organized in the youth sector in Metro Manila in 2004. After leaving the movement temporarily, she touched base with the revolutionary movement in Batangas and performed key duties in the province. This included publishing the revolutionary newspaper Lagablab ng Batangan and cultural duties.

In 2020, she played a vital role in recovering vast areas of Eastern Batangas as secretary of the Party committee and people’s army unit. She displayed skill and dedication in fulfilling her duties in the Party, and was elected as a member of the Regional Committee in January 2022.

“As a young cadre of the Party and an officer of the people’s army, Ka Arya diligently fulfilled her tasks. She strived to fulfill them and gave her it her all,” according to the regional committee.

She overcame her physical limitations. She persevered in walks even while carrying heavy loads, her comrades shared.

“The masses of Batangas and Southern Tagalog people will never forget the great contribution of Ka Arya especially in advancing the revolutionary movement in Batangas,” the regional committee of the Party declared. Together Ka Mamay/Mike and Ka Ricky/Vale, she is among Batangas’ countless good sons and daughters who stood firm and maintained the offensive posture and was not intimidated by the intimidation and repression of the state and its armed agencies.

Recovering the remains

Karapatan-Southern Tagalog and Tanggol Batangan reported its efforts to recover the bodies of the slain fighters last week. The group says they are in contact with the local authorities to help the families and to find out if there have been violations of human rights and international humanitarian laws recorded.

The group condemned the 59th IB and PNP Rosario for the delay and intimidation. In the report sent by the team of Karapatan-Southern Tagalog, the process of retrieving the remains of the victims was delayed which adversely affected the families.

The human rights group also revealed that officers from the 59th IB were harrasing and were secretly in touch with the relatives of the slain martyrs. The group was suspicious of this as it seemed like the militar is pressuring the family to hide traces of violations of international humanitarian law as they did to a similar case in December 2023.

“Karapatan Southern Tagalog demands that the 59th IB be held accountable for its violations of the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law or CARHRIHL, and give the remains to its family,” according to the group.

AB: CPP honors martyrs of Rosario, Batangas