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TABLE OF CONTENTS 16 March 2012

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Phil Star p. A-33

Military justifies keeping troops in Luisita, points fingers at NPA

Tribune p. 1

2

The military has no plans to pull out troops from Hacienda Luisita in Tarlac, which is owned by the family of President Aquino and is subject of a Supreme Court decision ordering the distribution of the large sugar estate to its farm workers, despite calls from various groups to recall soldiers from the area. Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) spokesman Col. Arnulfo Marcelo Burgos Jr. yesterday said the military leadership has no plans yet to reassign elements of the Army's 3rd Mechanize Infantry Battalion, headed by Lt. Col. Ernesto Torres Jr., out of the Hacienda Luisita. (Mario Matlari)
Soldiers capture NPA camp in Agusan Norte

Phil Star p. A32

Government security forces captured on Tuesday afternoon the main camp of the New People's Army (NPA) in Agusan del Norte without firing a single shot after the insurgents hastily abandoned it, the military said yesterday. Maj. Eugenio Julio Osias IV, spokesman of the Army's 4th Infantry Division, said elements of the 3rd Special Forces Battalion are now occupying the NPA camp in Barangay Puting Bato, Cabadbaran City. (Jaime Laude, Ben Serrano) 3 Ex~rebelsreceive P1.2~M aid Twenty-four former NPA rebels received P1.2-million cash assistance from the government, said Capt. Romeo A Publico, public affairs officer of the Army 7015( Infantry Brigade, on Thursday. (Mike Crismundo)
Improvised bomb sumabog, bata patay

Tempo p. 5

Isang menor de edad ang namatay sa habang isa ang sugatan nang sumabog ang isang bomba sa isang bahay sa Tapaz, Capiz kamakailan. Kinilala ng awtoridad ang namatay na si Rodelyn Aguirre, 6, at ang sugatan na si Roda, 5. Sa imbestigasyon ng military, nanonood ang dalawang bata sa pagbubuo ng bomba ng mga pinaghihinalaang rebeldeng NPA nang bigla itong sumaboo. (Jun A. Aguirre)
Mindanao recounts carnage in Corregidor

Balita p. 5

Manila Times p. A-7

4

"Week of Peace and Solidarity" in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) that kicked off Monday and end on Sunday, March 18 commemorates a grim chapter in the nation's history involving the attempt to seize oil-rich Sabah. Officer-in-Charge Regional Governor Mujiv Hataman said the peace and solidarity week is meant to commemorate the infamous Jabidah massacre, which triggered the Muslim uprising in recent time and reawakened their quest for self-determination. The incident refers to the massacre of a number of young Moro recruits from Sulu and TawiTawi, with estimates ranging from 28 to more than 200, by their military handlers in the island of Corregidor. (Julmunir Jannaral)
AFP aELATlID Pinoy peacekeepers off to Haiti ISSUES

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Mia. Times p. A2

5

The Philippine Navy will send off today a team composed of 12 officers and 143 enlisted personnel as the country's contingent to the United Nations (UN) Peacekeeping Force to Haiti. The Navy team will replace the 14th Navy contingent in Haiti following a handover procedure at the Haiti Airport on Saturday. The 14th contingent will arrive in the

Philippines on the following day. (Jovee Marie N. dela Cruz) PH to send new batch of peacekeepers to UN mission in Haiti The Philippine Navy will send off another batch of peacekeeping forces to support the United Nations mission in Haiti on Friday in a simple ceremony at the Villamor Air Base, official said. Composed of 12 Navy officers and 143 enlisted personnel, the new team of peacekeepers will replace the previous contingent in "handover' proceedings at the Haiti Airport on Saturday. The 14th contingent will return to the Phili ines on Sunda . OJ Ya POI p. 5

Report to UN: Abuses vs tribal folk continue
A report submitted to the United Nations said the Philippine government has failed to "decisively" address abuses against indigenous Filipinos, incfuding murders of tribal leaders in Mindanao. The report, prepared by party-list group Katribu and other human rights organizations, said abuses against tribal people continued under the Aquino administration, which projects itself as the antithesis of its predecessor, the highly o ular Arro 0 administration. Vincent Cabreza China has no plans of invading other countries - envoy Amid rising concerns by the international community regarding China's military buildup, Chinese Ambassador to the Philippines Ma Keqing on Thursday clarified that Beijing has "no ambition to invade [or] to interfere" in the affairs of other countries by sheer "military power." During a roundtable discussion held in an exclusive village in Makaf City (Metro Manila), the envoy stressed that China's defense policy "is fully defensive in nature," Bernice Camille Bauzon China will not use force in Spratlys. says new envoy China does not intend to invade or use its military might to interfere in the affairs of any of its neighbors, including the Philippines and four other countries claiming ownerships of the Spratlys in the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea), Beijing's new ambassador to Manila said esterda . Jer Es lanada Chinese envoy calms regional fears The Chinese ambassador to the Philippines yesterday moved to calm growing fears of armed confrontation in the Pacific, where the two countries are locked in a tense territorial row. (Pia Lee) Disaster Response at 2012 'Balikatan' This year's Balikatan military exercise will focus mostly on disaster response for a strong earthquake, simulating last year's deadly earthquake that almost destroyed Japan. (Jonas Reyes)

POI

p. Ai0

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Mia. Times p. A1

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POI p. A 1

8-9

Phil Star p. 9

Mia. Bulletin p. 13

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Peace Monitors A new contingent of the Malaysian peace monitors in Mindanao have arrived in Cotabato City on Tuesday to continue observing compliance with the 1997 ceasefire agreement between the Government of the Philippines (GPH) and Muslim rebels. Malaysia heads the International Monitoring Team (IMT), with members Libya, Brunei, Japan, Norway, and European Union. It has over 40 military, police, and civilian officers. (Edd Usman) DFA wants stricter rules on Visiting forces Agreement Stricter rules covering the presence of US military forces in the Philippines will be enforced in light of the decision of Manila and Washington to strengthen defense cooperation and stage more joint military exercises. OJ Sta. Ana

Mia. Bulletin p. 15

Phil Star p. 4

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12

iles p. 3

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March 2012

page:633

"FORECAST'.'
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OFFICE OF THE ARMY C;HIEFPUBlICAF~AlRS - Emall.d4:oaCpuwpa@yahoet.com.-Telno.(02)892-1693.Lc2c:aI:

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March 2012

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in,Luisita, points fingers at NPA .

Military justifies keeping troops

By MariO J. Mallari
ThemiIitary has no plans to pull out troops from Hacienda Luisita in Tarlac, which is owned by the family of President Aquino and is subject of a Supreme Court decision ordering the distribution of the large sugar estate to its farm workers, despite calls from various groups to recall soldiers from the area.

Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) spokesman Col. Arnulfo Marcelo Burgos Jr, yesterday said the military leadership has no plans yet to reassign elements of the Army's 3rd Mechanize Infantry Battalion, headed by Lt. Col. Ernesto Torres Jr., out of the Hacienda Luisita. Burgos also expressed fears that only "bad and criminal elements,"including communist New People's Army (NPA) could benefit if military troops are pulled out from the area. For his part, Torres seconded Burgos' pronouncement of no immediate plans to reassign his battalion somewhere else, saying there is no order from higher military authorities to pull out from the hacienda. Torres also cited the fact that some founders of the NPAare from i Tarlac. . "Based on history, there are several cadres that are from the area. We all know that some of the founders of the NPAare from Tarlac. It is not a secret to us that some of them are from here," Torres said. Former top NPA commander Bernabe Buscayno, alias commander Dante, hails from Capas town in Tarlac. But Buscayno has long been back to the mainstream society and living a peaceful life in his hometown. Torres also justified that the presence of his men in Hacienda Luisita was aimed at denying the resurgence of insurgency problem in the area after the province of Tarlac was declared insurgency-free in 2010. "We supported the local government's efforts in clearing the province of insurgency and in 2010, it was declared insurgency free. Why "'-'- .......------.--. are we still here? The purpose is to •. . . OFFlCEOFTHE~ effectively prevent and deny the d:oacpa_hpa@yah:oo.Com- Telno~(02)892~1693.locaf:5287,5295. t resurgence of the group in previously cleared areas," Torres stressed.

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~ At present, the Army has 120 soldiers deployed within the huge sugar estate owned by the Cojuangeo clan of President Aquino. Earlier, several groups called for an investigation of the supposed militarization at the Hacienda Luisita, which is a subject of Supreme Court order for land distribution to thousands of farmers, following supposed harassment by government troops and private security personnel against the farm workers. The Alyansa ng mga Manggagawang Bukid sa Asyenda Luisita (Ambala) said in a statement that the Alyansa ng mga Magbubukid sa Gitnang Luzon, Karapatan, Unyon ng mga Manggagawa sa Agrlkultura, Lulsita Peasants' and Peoples' Alliance and other organizations will join the fact-finding mission that covers the barangays of Balete, Mapalacsiao, Lourdes, Cutcut and Asturias in Tarlac City; Motrico and Bantog in La Paz; and Mabilog, Pando, and Parang all in Concepcion. Ambala chairman Felix Naepil Jr.. urged the :military, the police arid other paramilitary groups to withdraw their forces from the hacienda and stop .. harassing farm workers who are now : considered the legitimate owners of the land based on the SC decision issued last November. Ambala and other farmers' organizations had filed a petition before the Supreme Court to finally' resolve the issues in the Hacienda to start the land distribution process. However,the Hacienda Luisita Inc. (HLI) management had sought a reconsideration and at the same time is asking for a steep price as government payment for land appropriation. HLI, in a petition, said while it would respect whatever is the SC I decision on the earlier ruling of the Presidential Agrarian Reform Council, it will seek PIO billion in government compensation for the 6,OOO-hectaresugar estate.

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Soldiers capture NPA camp in AgusanNorte
Government security forces captured on Tuesday afternoon the main camp .. of the New People's Army (NPA) in Agusan del Norte without firing a single shot after the insurgents hastily abandoned it, the military said yesterday. Maj. Eugenio Julio Osias Iv, spokesman of the Army's 4th Infantry Division, said elements of the 3rd Special Forces Battalion are now occupying the NPAcamp in Barangay Puting Bato, Cabadbaran City. .. The NPA camp, according to Osias, has six kitchens, 126 bunkers and 30 outposts and foxholes and can accom-' . modate 500 rebels at any given time.> He said the rebels belonging to the ' NPA's North Eastern Mindanao Regional Committee immediately £led the camp as government troops were approaching it . - Jaime Laude, Ben Serrano

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OFFICE OF THE ARMY CHIEF PUBLIC AFfAIRS - Email add: oacpaj1pa@yahoo~m.- Tet no. (02) 892..(693, Local: 5287, 5295

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OFFICE OF THE ARMY CHIEF ccPUBLIC AFFAIRS - Email add:oacpahpa@yahoo.com

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March 2012

Mindanao recounts carnage in Corregidor
BY JULMUNIR I.JANNARAL CORRESPONDENT

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OTABATOCITY: "Week of Peace and Solidarity" in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao {ARMM}that kicked off Monday . and end on Sunday, March 18 commemorates a grim chapter in nation's history involving the attempt to seize oil-rich Sabah.

the

Officer-in-Charge Regional Covemor Mujiv Hataman said the peace and solidarity week is meant to commemorate the infamous Iabidah massacre, which triggered the Muslim uprising in recent time . and reawakened their quest for.selfdetermination. .

•The incident refers to the massacreof a number of young Moro re. emits from Sulu and Tawi-Tawi, with estimates ranging from 28 to more than 200, by their military handlers in the island of Corregidor. The recruits were undergoing training for a governrnent-spon-

sored covert military operation dubbed as "Operation Merdeka" with the objective of invading Sabah, which is until now owned by the Sultanate of Sulu& North . Borneo, but was unilaterally annexed by Malaysia after it formed its federation. Colonel Eduardo 'Abdullatif" Martelino started the training of a commando-type of training that involved jungle warfare at Camp Sophia, and was named after his wife from Simunul, Tawi-Tawi, where the training camp. was set up before the trainees were shipped to . Corregidor by naval boat. libin Arula, one of the [abidah trainees from Siasi, Sulu was the lone survivor who managed to tell about the massacre that also resulted in a probe by the Senate when the late Senator Benigno "Ninoy"

Aquino stood up in a privilege speech and denounced the massacre of the Mom trainees.

Raked with gunfire
As the lone survivor Arula later recounted that the plotters led the trainees out.of their Corregidor barracks on the night of March 18, 1968 in batches of twelve. They were taken to a nearby airport. There, the militarymostlyJrom the Philippine Army mowed the trainees down with gunfire, according to Arula. Arula said that he heard a series of shots and saw his colleagues fall. OFFICE He ran towards a mountain and rolled off the edge on to the sea, He recalled clinging to a plank of wood and stayed afloat. Bymorning, a fisherman from nearby Cavite rescued him and was brought to Governor Delfin Montano of Cavite Province.

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Governor Hataman for setting this The incident instigated also the one week celebration to honor the Hangsamoro srudent activists in Manila. The then University of the Philmartyrdom of the young Moros who ippines Prof Nurullaji Misuari, who died in the J abidah Massacre and all those who fell in defense of the ' was teaching political science at the Bangsamoro homeland.' state university, and student leader As this developed, Howard like Abul Khayr Alonto led the mass Cafugauan, assistant secretary of the actions of the Muslim students in Office of Presidential Adviser on the Manila against the Marcos regime, Peace Process, appealed to all The whole incident had led also ARMM constituents "to make the to the formation of the Mora region work" as he saw for himself tional Liberation Front (MNLF), which is headed until now by Chair- - how "sincere the intentions of the Ole's are.". man Nur Misuari. 'We have Autonomous Region in Cafugauan said the sincerity of the presentARMM caretaker govern; ---_--. Muslim Mindanao today because of the blood shed by the martyrs who ment are best shown on the differ; i287.5295 ent reform programs that are being :... . died that fateful day in 1968, just .'. to uphold the sovereignty and idenput in place such as those that . tity of the Bangsamoro," said Anwar champion good governance and accountability that will eventually MaJang, ARMM executive secretary. bring about peace and development OIC Regional Vice-Governor in the region. Bainon Karon said "I wish to thank

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Pinoy peacekeepers off to Haiti
THE Philippine Navy will send off today a team composed of 12 officers and 143 enlisted personnel as the country's contingent to, the , United Nations' (UN) Peacekeeping Force to Haiti. The Navy team will replace the 14th Navy contingent in Haiti following a handover procedure at the Haiti Airport on Saturday, The 14th contingent will arrive in the Philippines, on the followingday. The group expected to provide perimeter security to the Force Headquarters of the UN_Mission to Haiti, provide administrative. and logistics and clerical services to the' Force Headquarters, operate their military vehicles 'and provide VIP

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security to specified personalities by the Force Headquarters. "They are-expected to serve their tour in Haiti for six to nine months and will be replaced by another all Navy contingent from the APP [Armed Forces of the Philippines) Peacekeeping Force to the UN, the agency said,
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JOVEE MARIE N. DElA CRUZ

PH to send new batch of peacekeepers to UNmission in Haiti
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The peacekeeping forces are expected to serve their tour in the Caribbean country for THEPHILIPPINENavy will send off aneth- sixto nine months and will be replaced by aner batch of peacekeeping forces to support other all-Navycontingent upon their rerum the United Nations mission in Haiti on Fri-, On March 9, the contingent commander, day in a simple ceremony at the Villamor Col. ArthurM. Biyo, paid an exit call on the Air Base, officials said. Navy Flag Officer in Command, Vice AdmiComposed of 12 Navy officers and 143 ral Alexander Pama. enlisted personnel, the new team of peaceThe UNpeacekeeping mission in Haiti, in keepers will replace the previous contin- operation since 2004, is aimed at providing gent in "hand over" proceedings at.the Haiti stability, promoting peace and order and Airport on Saturday. The 14th contingent restoring and maintaining the nile oflaw. will return to the Philippines on Sunday. The 14th and 15th contingents are the only two all-Navy contingents deployed by the Armed Forces of the Philippines peacekeeping force to United Nations missions, the Navy said in a statement. "They are tasked 1:0 provide perimeter security to the Force Headquarters of the UN " Missionto Haiti, provide administrative and logistics clerical services to the Force Headquarters, operate their military vehicles and

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vs tribal folk continue
BAGUIO CITY-A report submitted to the United Nations said the Philippine government has failed to "decisively" address abuses against indigenous Filipinos, including murders of tribal leaders in Mindanao. The report, prepared by party-list group Katribu and other human rights organizations, said abuses against tribal people continued under the Aquino administration, which projects itself as the antithesis of its predecessor, the highly unpopular Arroyo administration. Beverly Longid, Katribu president, said among the cases of abuse documented against tribal Filipinos are the recent murders of tribal leaders in Mindanao.. including the killing of Jimmy Liguyon of San Fernando, Bukidnon. Under the Aquino administration, Longid also said the practice of branding tribal people's schools as communist fronts continued. The report, published by the Ateneo Human Rights Center (AHRC) last month, cited a specific example of this. It 'said two schools built for the Manobos in Mindana;'_Alternative Learning Center for Agriculture and Livelihood Development and Tribal Filipino Program of Surigao del Sur-were branded '. by the military as communist fronts. "Consequently, the children are regarded as members of the communist Ne-: PeesaId the "These schools," it said, "are intermittently used by the Armed Forces of the Philippines as military camps." Longid said the report was submitted in January to the United Nations Human Rights Council's Universal Periodic Review, an undertaking made every four years which requires UN member-' states to report how much each country has improved the rights and lives of their indigenous communities. The next phase of this year's UN review win be held in Geneva in June. Longid said the joint report is an alternative' summary of current events. The government is mandated by the UN to submit its own rep-ort. The report compiles research and results of fact-finding missions of Katribu, AHRC and several other human rights groups in the Philippines and abroad. The report said the Philippines has been a forerunner in legal work to protect human rights through a Constitution that these guarantees rights.

Report to UN: Abuses

The Kalipunan ng mga Katutubong Mamamayan ng Pilipinas (Kamp) sent to the UN High Commissioner on Human Rights a separate report, which takes the government to task for allowing paramilitary groups to protect private firms at the expense of tribal communities living on lands marked 'for development. -c Kamp said 13 indigenous Pilipinos have been killed under the Aquino administration, adding to the 151 extrajudicial killings that involved IPs under the administration of ex-President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo from 2001 to 2010. Vincent

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China has no plans of invading other countries - envoy
BY BERNICE CAMILLE V. SAUZON REPORTER AMIDrising concerns by the international community regarding China's military buildup, Chinese Ambassador to the Philippines Ma Keqing on Thursday clarified that Beijing has'no ambition to invade [orl to interfere"in the affairs of other countries by sheer "military power." , During a roundtable discussion held in an exclusive village in Makati City (Metro Manila), the envoy stressed that China's defense policy "is fully defensive [in] nature." "We have no intention or ability to pose fa] threat to other countries. What we want to do Isto protect China's interests, protect its borders and its sovereignty, that's aU/ she said.

was beefing up its military for an offensive in the Asia Pacific region-, where Washington is also flexing itsmusrles. Keqing, a former ambassador to "The Pacific is wide enough to Finland, was named Philippine envoy .accommodate the United States and about two months ago, filling the post China. We hope [that] the United vacated by Llu Jianchao. States will take a constructive and , She explained thatthl! l1.l·percent , positive role to [keep} this region increase in Chinese military spendi ng [Asia PacifiC] more peaceful and should not cause alarm, since it was in . stable.rthe envoy said. accorda nee with the development of • ' Keqing, howeve r,stressed that China's economy. Washington must "respect Chinese The Ch,inese official said that the concerns in the regia n.' increased military bUdget has always "We hope our interests will be been"minimal" and that officials only respected by others, including the decided to increase it "to compensate United States, including the Philippines [for] the previous yearsjwe neglected and other countries. At the same time, ourl military budget. we respect the lnterests of other "Amajor part of the growth [in countries," she said. military spending] has been used for The official added that it is logistiCS,for improvement of the. Manila's right to enter into officers'well~being, to increase wages military cooperation with the and so on," Keqing said. United States, Since "every country , "[It has only been in] the past " must adopt its policies according few years that we [began using1 to its own condltions." , the [budget increase] to purchase, China, in the past, has frowned some hardware for the military;" upon Manila's declsion to allow more she added. US troops in its territory, seeing it as , The envoy said that China's approved Manila's way to reinforce its claims . military budget is only 1.3 percent of over the disputed Spratly group of , the countrys total budget, which is islands in the West Philippine Sea "much lower" than that of the United [South China Seal. ' States, the United Kingdom, Russia, and '. Putportedly rich in oil and mineral even India and Brazil. reserves, the Spratlys a re being dai med "With such a military, budget, I in whole by China, and in part by tile believe that the Chinese Army will Philippines, Vietnam, Taiwan, Malaysla not pose any threat to other and Brunei Darussalam. countries," she said. Alldaimant-countrles, except Brunei, have milit~ry troops stationed i i Respect in the d lsputed area, which includes Keqing belied reports that Beijing some 100 ls'ets, reefs and atoll~.
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China wi . not use force in Spratlys, says new envoy
By Jerry E. Esplanada
CHINAdoes not intend to invade or' use its military might to interfere the affairs of any of its neighbors, ineluding the Philippines and four other countries claiming ownership of the Spratiys in the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea), Beijing's

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new ambassador to Manila said yesterday. 'We have no ambition or ability to pose a threat to other countries ... What we want to do is to protect China's interests, protect its borders and sovereignty. That's all," Ambassador . Ma Keqing told a news conference
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CHINESEAMBASSSADOR

Ma

Ararm bells held yesterday at her residence in DasmariEarly this month, Beijing announced that fias Village, Makati City. . . its defense budget would increase to Asked about the US plan to increase its 670.27 billion yuan (about $106.41 bilmilitary presence in the region, Ma said lion) this year. The amount marks a slow- . "China has responded very calmly" to the down from 2011 when its budget rose by issue. 12.7 percent but stilI set off alarm bells "The Asia-Pacific is wide enough to acacross Asia and the United States. commodate (both) the US and China," she . In January, Washington disclosed a desaid. fense strategy focused on countering ChiMa who assumed her post only two na's rising power. months ago, noted the Il.2-percent inIn her first news conference in the councrease in China's military budget this year try, Ma expressed hope the Philippines might have "aroused suspicions" among and China could "finally find a way to other countries about its real intentions. start the negotiations" on the joint develShe emphasized that China's military poliopment of areas in the West Philippine cy was "purely defensive in nature." Sea. She pointed out that the growth in Chi']\s Chinese, we are patient, But with pana's military budget had been "very minitience and wisdom and goodwill, we can fi- • mal" for a long time. "We increased the . nally find a way," she said. "Our thinking is; growth just to compensate for the previous that pending final resolution of {the years of neglecting the military budget," Spratlys dispute), we should shelve and put '.• she said. aside the differences and have ajoint coopMa said the bulk of military expendieration (agreement)." tures had been usedrfor logistics, for im''The resources are there to tap," Ma said, provement of the officers' well-being, to adding that economic development "is our increase wages and so on. It's only for the priority" for China, the Philippines, Vietlast few years we used the increase in bud-: nam, Taiwan, Malaysia and Brunei, which get to purchase some hardware for the are claiming ownership over the Spratlys. military." · The military budget was "only 1.3 perJoint development .cent of the total (government) budget," she "But since it's in the disputed islands, no stressed, pointing out that it was much lowone can take actions unilaterally. So the er than those of the United States, United proper way to do that, or the starting point Kingdom, Russia, India and Brazil. .: "So with such a military budget, I believe the Chinese Army will not pose any threat . to other countries," she said. ·:;.,.i.,'>'(.::;'X~;;i.:;C"";';:';'<:".·"·';b;.i·:?.,»,',' >/.'.;;,,:.;·...."··5> .•...... ; ·'>'x·<';,·'·' .... ·.' . .,_._.~ ..... ~l.' Yl:I,r::r .r:UD~~;"r,.#'Utt~~ ~.J.lrla(J:"l).9Pllbpafi~~~6Jtom,;+-'I~I~·to2)'8~89'~l.()cat~5!81f.5~5 .
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is to .s~elve differences and disputes and have joint cooperation," she said. Ear!ier, Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosano told the INQUIRER that the joint development of areas in the West Philippine Sea that "are clearly ours is not a viable option" to~e country's problem with China. B.ut ~e s~~ the Philippines "is open to considering joint development in the disputed areas." . Del Rosario said he "reiterated our positi~n that we are open to inviting China in the Recto Bank (Reed Bank) as an Investor to be .goven:ed by our laws" during a recent meetmg. WIth Wang Yingfanand Wang Chunqui, two former Chinese ambassadors to the Philippines who were here on a goodwill visit The Recto Bank is an "integral part of the Philippines and, as such, cannot be jointly developed," he said. . Dur~ng th.e m;;~vs conference yesterday, Ma said China IS not against the rulesbased interpretation of the dispute." "We also endorse international norms that we should abide by. But one cannot side only with few clauses of the (UN Con. vention on the Law of the Sea or Unclos) and neglect other clauses," she said.

No longer Cold War
She expressed hope the United States "will take a constructive and positive role to make this region more peaceful and ,. stable." . . ':y!e believe and hope that there is a possIbll~ty ~or C.hina and the US to have cooperation in this regiorrrarhsr than confrontation, I like to believe that based on this argument this is not anymore Cold War. We are living in a new world. We are Hying in a global VIllage, and we are so interdepen. dent," she said.

.... At •.he .~~me time,. sh~ expressed optit
mism thar' all countnes m 'this regiorr'can develop their economies and improve the wen·being of their people." :'China has its, own interests. Being an ASIa.n country, it s only natural. We hope our mterests will be respected by others ineluding the US, the Philippines and o~her ~ountries. At the same time, we respect the interests of other countries. In that way; we can ?ave mutual trust and enhanced cooperanon. At the end of the day; economic development will determine the development of a nation," she added.

Other treaties
"There are more international norms than (Uncles). Even according to this treaty, we can find some arguments to support China's stance. There's a little bit of misunderstanding that China does not abi?e by international rules and only to historical facts. Unclos is just one treaty. There are other treaties," she said. Del Rosario has repeatedly asserted that a rules-base~ approach is the "only legiti- .: mate ~nd viable way in addressing dispu:~s 1.n the West Philippine Sea." The Phlhppmes has been pushing for the availrnent of the dispute settlement mechanisms under Uncles,

OFFICE OF THE ARMY CHIEF PUBLlCAFFAlRS-

Emailadcl:oacpa_hpa@ya.hoo.COfI1,;;, Tel

no~(02) 892·1693; local: 5287, 5295

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. OFFICEOF THEARMY CHIEF PUBUC AFFAlRS- Email add:oacpa..JtpOahoo.Com

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March 2012

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Chinese envoy calms regional fears
moved-to calm growing fears of armed confrontation in the Pacific, where the two countries are locked in a tense territorial row. "The Pacific is large . enough for the US and China. We hope that the US will take a constructive role to make this region more peaceful and stable," Ambassador Ma Keqing told reporters .. "It's up to you: military, economic (ties) with other countries. It's a basic principle not to intervene with other's affairs. Every country adopts its policy according to its national conditions." China and the Philippines, along with Taiwan, Vietnam, Malaysia and Brunei have competing claims over large parts of the South China Sea, including the Spratly Islands. However, Ma· defended the growth of China' 5 military budget, saying it is necessary to protect their interest sovereignty and borders. China, the second-largest economy in the world, announced that their new defense budge t waul d amount to RMB670 billion (approximately $106 billion), or a 11.2percent increase.
to the Philippines yesterday

The Chinese ambassador

Ma said the increase of 11.2 ware. be seen as a threat to othe percent in military budget is But she said the increase in countries. in accordance with China's defense spending should not - Pia Lee-Brago, AFJ development and to compensate for the previous years' budget although a big part was used for logistics and improvement of the officers' wellbeing. "Dur:ing this last Congress session it has been decided that military budget will have a growth of 11.2 percent that arouse suspicion of military buildup and possible threat DISASTER RESPONSE to other countries. Webelieve AT 2012 'BAlIKATAN' that China's military budget is in accord ance with the SUSIC BAY FREEPORT - This pronouncement of Chinese .: year's Balikatan military exereconomic development," Ma cise will focus mostly on disaster said during a forum at the response for a strong earthChinese embassy. quake, simulating last year's She explained that it was deadly earthquake that almost only during the last few years destroyed Japan. Col. Arnulfo that the budget increase went Marcelo Burgos said this year's to purchase of military hardexercise will not pnly be partici-

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pated by the us and Philippine military troops but would also train civilian government agencies tasked in disaster response management. The exercises will run from April 16 to 26. (Jonas Reyes)

PEACE MONITORS

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Anew contingent of the MalayI sian peace monitors in Mindanao I have arrived in Cotabato City on Tuesday to continue observi i,ng compliance with the 1997 I ceasefire agreement between I the Government of the PhilipI pines (GPH) and Muslim rebels. I Malaysia heads the International I Monitoring Team (IMT) , with I members Libya, Brunei, Japan, Norwav, and European Union. It I has over 40 military, police, and cl~lianb~ce~.The IMTa~o

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OFFICE OF THE ARMY CHIEF PUBLIC AFfAIRS - Email.deI:oacpajlpa@yahoo.com

.. has no~~state memb~rs.' such

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as Belgium-based Nonviolent ; Peaceforce, Mindanao Human I Rlghts Action Center, Mindanao I People's Caucus, and the Muslim Organization of Government Employees and Professionals. I (Edd Usman)
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IJ

- tel no. (02) 892-1893. Local~5281'15295

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March 2012

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DF~ wants stricter rules on .Visiting Forces Agreement
Del Rosario noted they are very aware of the concerns raised over the social impact of the presence of US troops, referring to prostitution. "We are reviewForeign Affairs Secretary ing the VFA now to make sure ., Albert del Rosario, in an excluit is fine-tuned, we are doing sive interview with News5, adthat now and it is a work in mitted the 2006 rape case inprogress," he explained, emvolving US Marine Lance Corphasizing "where we can tightporal Daniel Smith was the , en up, we are looking to tightmain driver behind the review ,_,en things up a bit ... We don't of the provisions of the Visit, have final output yet" Del Rosario, along with De. ing Forces Agreement (VFA). fense Secretary Voltaire "We are looking at that (the Gazmin, will meet with US Smith case), we are trying to State Secretary Hillary see how we can respond to Rodham Clinton and US Desome of the criticisms we refense Secretary Leon Panetta ceived regarding that case," on April 30, 2012 in WashingDel Rosario said. ton for the first ever 2,,+ 2 meeting between thePhilippines and the United States. Smith was convicted of rap"We feel there is great valing a Filipina in 2006 while on ue in this arrangement because station in Subic. Smith was thereis a synergy between forbriefly detained in a Philippine , eign policy and defense coopjail but was later transferred to eration that can be established a facility within the US embashere," he said. "It embraces the sy - 'a move that was roundly I' full gamut of the bilateral criticized. agenda," In 2009, the Meanwhile, the Philippines Court of Appeals is not. worried the renewed overturned the military cooperation with the lower court's conwill serve as a new irritant viction, which with China. ' paved the way for ' Defense cooperation and the US to fly Smith . expanding economic tie's out immediately. through trade and investments Del Rosario ad - ' are the main topics for the 2 + mitted they want2 meet and the Philippines will ed to clearly define move to capitalize onth~, fact the provisions on jurisdiction of US. the is its main strategic forces involved in partner. . criminal activity "We see it as an opportumand the" questions --.-tyforustobe able to maximize ,--OFFICEOFTI on the quality of ~AFFAlIi the strategic partnership as :om..;T. the detention facil' well as the treaty alliance with. - -Hies." the US," he said. Del Rosario said that while the Philippines is open to exploring military ties wit~ o~her countries to develop a nunimurn credible d_il_lse posStricter rules covering the presence of US military forces ( in the Philippines will be enforced in light of the decision of Manila and Washington to strengthen defense cooperation and stage more joint military exercises.

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DJ STA. ANA

foremost because they are our treaty ally." Del Rosario did not say if they will present a "shopping list of military equipment" although the US will be turning over a second Hamilton-class coast guard cutter later this. year. But one area that can be operationalized immediately is joint military exercises and ~aining, with the us plan to increase the "rotational presence" of its forces in the Philippines. . "We are looking at interoperability ... entering into a partnership with the United States in terms of having more joint exercises, we have to improve the capability and capacity building of our people," he said, Turh to Page 5 Del Rosario gave assurance that the "in~ creased rotational presence" ofDS forces will "conform.with Philippinelaw and that weare not in violationof the Constitution." .: Asked on the possibility of forging a mili-· tary cooperation arrangement with China, Del Rosario said this is possible and that one such agreement was signed in 2005. "We arealso reaching out to China. ,. and we have regular exchanges on 'defense issues with them. They actually have provided us assistance in terms of engineering equipment, humanitarian assistance and also for disaster management," he explained. Apart from China, the Philippines is in defense cooperation arrangements with Australia. South Korea and Japan. Del Rosario said he does not believe a renewed Philippine-US military cooperation will be a new irritant in Manila's ties with China, , "1 don't think the exercises we are doing, the increased desire-on our part to expand defense cooperation with the United States and other countries, will be something China will consider as being irregular," he stressed. "I think China is fully aware of the multilateralism that <is culled for in terms of addressing the South China Sea issue." The Philippines has protested China's incursions in areas in the West Philippine' Sea that are well within Philippine territory, including the Spratly islands.

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Panawagan sa mga opisyal n9 AFP
Gusto ko lang po sana tawagan ng pansin angmga opisyal ngAFP regarding sa RESERVIST Act, kasi po yung namatay na reservist 'di man lang gina lang ng LeyteNorte sa pamumuno ni Maj. Jesus Diocton, - Concerned citizen

OFFICE OF THE ARMY CHIEF PUBLIC AFFAIRS - Email add:oacpa_hpa@yahoo.com

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