MANILA, Philippines – The denial by the military and the government of the existence of an “Order of Battle” with names of alleged enemies of the state has come under fire from rights groups, who described the denial as a disservice in the wake of the passage of Asia’s first measure outlawing enforced disappearances.
The long series of enforced disappearances precisely stemmed from the existence of such a list, as the “OB” has been taken as license by some men in uniform to seize persons on the list in order to neutralize the insurgency, Karapatan said.
“It seems that acts of denial are usual responses of the Aquino government and the AFP, when confronted with questions on their accountability for human rights violations. Mga denial kings ang mga nasa Malacanang at AFP! The lies that they have sown through their counter-insurgency program Oplan Bayanihan are now being exposed,” said Cristina Palabay, Karapatan secretary general.
Karapatan noted the practice of the Aquino government in “continuing” such policy through the reported Joint Order 14-2012 of the Department of National Defense and the Department of Interior and Local Government, which contains an alleged list of leaders of the communist movement whose bounties for arrests amount to P466million.
“Such order, which was not even made public, is a dangerous and malicious perpetuation of the OB list as it becomes a hit list of personalities/individuals who may be persecuted, filed with trumped-up charges or killed,” commented Palabay.
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