DOJ is blatantly covering-up AFP crime of killing 9-year old girl

This article is available in Pilipino

The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) denounces the Department of Justice (DOJ) for its blatant cover-up of the crime of the 59th IB in the killing of 9-year old Kyllene Casao last July 18, 2022 in Batangas. Contrary to its name, the DOJ is committing a gross travesty of justice.

Instead of filing charges against the officers and men involved in the indiscriminate firing which led to the death of Casao, the DOJ plans to file charges against six people who are being linked to the CPP and New People’s Army (NPA). This clearly aims to exculpate the criminal fascist officers and men of the 59th IB by shifting the blame to the NPA despite the fact that no NPA unit was in the area during the commission of the despicable crime.

Rushing home from gathering firewood and herding goats, Kyllene and her father, residents of Sitio Centro, Barangay Guinhawa, Taysan, Batangas, were indiscriminately fired at by a unit of the 59th IB positioned at the nearby elementary school. Kyllene was fatally hit and did not make it to the hospital. The soldiers were apparently trigger-happy following an armed encounter between the NPA and another unit of the 59th IB in Sitio Amatong in the same barangay, which is separated from Sitio Centro by high mountains.

The 59th IB cannot hide the truth that it was their bullets that killed 9-year old Kyllene. Their guilt is clearly reflected in their actions. They repeatedly threatened the Casao family and intimidated local residents to silence them. The village was placed under military control with soldiers using civilian structures as the basketball court, barangay hall and civilian homes for their operations. Human rights groups conducting humanitarian missions were repeatedly harrased and threatened by the 59th IB. They were intimidated up to Kyllene’s burial on July 28, 2022.

The residents of Sitio Centro are fully aware that the 59th IB, its acting Commanding Officer Lt. Col. Ernesto Teneza Jr, and the AFP Southern Luzon Command should be held liable for the killing of Kyllene. The 59th IB is notorious for countless other human rights violations in Batangas.

This is not the first time that AFP officers are evading justice by covering-up their crimes, especially the killing of children, by conveniently shifting blame to the NPA. However, they can not hide the fact that their hands are dripping in blood.

DOJ is blatantly covering-up AFP crime of killing 9-year old girl