The task force to end the local communist armed conflict in Palawan has slammed the Bienvenido Vallever Command (BVC) of the New People’s Army (NPA) for violating international humanitarian laws (IHL) when its armed members killed a provincial government nurse serving the frontlines against the coronavirus disease.
In a statement released Thursday by the Palawan Provincial Task Force on Ending Local Communist Armed Conflict (PTF ELCAC), it slammed the BVC for being the No. 1 violator of the provisions of the IHL by perpetrating crimes against civilians.
PTF ELCAC released the statement on the occasion of the IHL Month with the theme “Preserving Human Dignity in times of Armed Conflict: A Shared Responsibility”.
“These acts are clear violations of the IHL, yet the members of the NPA claim to be the protectors of the civilians’ human rights. That’s how hypocrite they are. They are not what they claim to be. Their allegiance to a rotten foreign ideology led to the massive violations of the IHL and the government is ready to prosecute them,” Lt. Col. Charlie Domingo, commanding officer of the Marine Battalion Landing Team-3 (MBLT-3) and PLEDS Cluster North Palawan head, said.
The statement was due to the recent attack against nurse Algerome Bernardo and wounding of three other medical responders on August 1 and the harassment of the Bunog Water System Project civilian workers that killed Jefferson Abella on May 28, 2020.
“The BVC committed war crimes under the International Humanitarian Law — [they] are intentionally making the civilian population or individual civilians the objects of their attack; willful killing; willfully causing great suffering or serious injury to body and health, and pillaging public or private property,” the task force stated.
PTF ELCAC said the BVC should be held liable for the crimes it committed and should be prosecuted under local laws as criminals.
“We are calling the peace-loving people of Palawan to unite and condemn the atrocities of the NPA by never tolerating these kinds of criminal acts in our communities. Any information that will lead to the capture of these armed bandits is welcome and appreciated. We should not allow that this criminal organization will disturb our peace that hinders our progress. We should make it clear to them that they are not welcome to our communities,” said retired lieutenant colonel Glenn Destriza, director of the Operation Center of PTF-ELCAC Palawan.
Recently, barangay officials of Dumarao vowed to support peace and development efforts of the government in their community led by chairman Nardito Acierto, vowed to support the peace and development efforts of the government to address the existing armed conflict in their community during a Cascading Forum.