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1rABLE OF CONTENTS 21 APRIL20t2
PASt:

1iITLE!SUMMARY'/W'RITER
Weather Forecast Phil Star p. A-22

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ARMY'RELATED iSSUES
NPAs waylay troops securing Oavao health workers Phil Star p, A-22 - Suspected New People's Army (NPA) rebels yesterday ambushed government troops providing security to hospital workers in the hinterlands of Marilog district this city. Alleged NPA nabbed for extortion - A 34-year-old man who disguised himself as an alleged member Tempo of the New People's Army (NPA) was arrested in an entrapment operation after allegedly collecting revolutionary taxes from a barangay chairwoman here. 4 rebels slain POI p. A-6 - Four suspected New People's Army rebels were killed in an encounter with Army soldiers in Lopez, Quezon, on Friday, said Col. Eduardo Afio, head of the Army's 201 st Infantry Briqade. 4 Reds killed in Quezon Daily Tribune p. 2 - Four New People's Army (NPA) rebels, including an amazon, were killed during a clash with Army troops in Quezon Province shortly after noontime yesterday. Military turns over Infra Projects Manila Bulletin p. 6 A total of five barangay infrastructure projects (BIPs) worth P10 million recommended through the Philippine Army's Kalayaan sa Barangay Project (KBP) were turned over on Wednesday to the residents of Banaybanay, Oavao Oriental. 4 'rebels' killed in clash Peoples Journal p. 12 - FIGHTING between security forces and suspected New People's Army gunmen in Baggao, Cagayan early yesterday morning resulted in the killing of four rebels, Police Regional Office 2 director Chief Supt. Rodrigo de Gracia said. Soldiers hit for civilians' death Peoples Journal p. 12 - Despite the military's claim of a legitimate encounter, a human rights group condemned the killing of three civilians during an encounter with New People's Army rebels last week in Barangay Butanguiad. I killed as US boat rams fishing vessel Peoples Journal p. 7 - A FISHERMAN died while his son was wounded when a speedboat owned by the US military collided with their fishing vessel Wednesday night in Basilan.

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AFP RELATED lSSUES
5-6 Pinoy fisherman protest presence of Chinese ships Filipino fishermen are protesting China's "bullying" in Panatag (Scarborough) Shoal off Zambales, saying the presence of its vessels in Philippine territorial waters is threatening their livelihood. Us vessel rams boat off Basilan; Pinoy fisherman killed - A United States military boat rammed into a small fishing boat in Basilan province on Wednesday, killing a fisherman while Phil Star p. 1

Daily Tribune p. 1

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another one was injured, a military official yesterday said. Probe sought on sea mishap involving US soldiers - Former mayor Tahira Ismael of Lantawan, Basilan, has sought an investigation of the April 18 sea mishap involving American soldiers, which led to the death of a relative, and the wounding of another. US soldiers in mishap not part of Balikatan - The military yesterday denied that the US soldiers involved in a mishap off Basilan that killed a fisherman, were part of the ongoing Balikatan exercise. Photo: US soldiers ... PNP chief: Hunting Palparan 'difficult' Even the chief of the Philippine National Police has admitted that capturing fugitive Army Gen. Jovita Palparan is proving to be "difficult," as the former military commander has been trained in exactly the same way as his pursuers. Judge rejects Palparan bid for new probe - The Department of Justice (DOJ) yesterday scored against retired Army Maj. Gen. Jovita Palparan in the case against him before the Malolos City court over the alleged enforced disappearance of University of the Philippines student-activists Sherlyn Cadapan and Karen Empeno in 2006. Plea Junked - A Bulacan court judge junked yesterday the petition of fugitive ex-Army official Jovita Palparan and two others to recall the warrant of arrest issued to him and to suspend the trial in connection with the abduction and disappearance of two Universtly of the Philippines students in 2006 which tagged him as the mastermind. Phi to bring shoal dispute to int'l body - Believing that the world is watching China's behavior In Panatag (Scarborough) Shoal, the Philippines declared yesterday it will bring its territorial dispute with China to the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS).

PDI p. A-6

Phil Star p. A-22

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Phil Star p. 1 PDI p. A1

Phil Star p. A-22

Manila Bulletin p, 13

Phil Star p. 1

EDITOruALlCOMMENTARY'/OpmION
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17-18 19 Are we being led to war? Batanes interlude C-130s chop-chopped in Mactan? Maximum US gains at least cost via VFA Phil Star p, 15 Phil Star p. 15 Phil Star p. 15

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April 2012

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WEATHER FORECAST·
An Intertropicel convergence zone affects southern 'Mindanao, while the ridge of a high pressure area extends Mindanao will be mostly cloudy with scattered rainshowers and thunden>tollUS, becoming cloudy with widespread rains • over easternMindanao, The rest of the country wiU

across Luzon.

be partly cloudy to cloudy

with ·isolated rainshowers or thunderstorms, mostly in the afternoon or evening. Coastal waters throughout • the archipelago will be slight to moderate. Temperature forecasts: Metro Manila, 23-35 degrees Celsius; Baguio City~ 15-27; Tagaytay City, 23-31; Subic and Clark zone, 24-35; Metro Cebu, 25-32; Metro Davao, 2531; and Cagayan de Oro, 22.:32. Tidal predictions inManila

Bay: high tide at 9:57 arn at 0.85 meter; low tide at 3:16 a.m. at 0.31 meter. Sunrise is at 5:39 a.m.: sunset at 6:11 p;m.
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April 2012

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NPAs waylay troops securing Davao health workers
DAVAO CITY:- Suspected New People's Army (NPA) rebels yesterday ambushed government troops providing securitY:'to.hosp.ita~workers in the hinterlands of Marilog district this city, According to the Army's 84th Infantry Battali0r:t, the soldiers were on a convoy to pick up the medi.cal personnel of the Marilog District Hospital who were on a three-day medical and feeding mission in Barangay Cumitan when they were waylaid, said Lt. Col. Gabriel Viray, 84th IB commander. "The soldiers were able to retaliate which resulted

Al'leged NPA nabbed for extortion
SAN MATEO, Rlzal - A 34-year-old man who disguised himself as an alleged member of the New Peoples Army was arrested in an entrapment operatlon after allegedly collecting revolutionary taxes fr~m afbar~ng?y ch~frvvoman here. Police Supt. Ruben Piquero, ore chief? police Ide~tlfje~ arrested suspect as Jon-Jon Aqueza, 34, the who Intr~duced hJ~self as member of the NPA alyas "Kurnander" and a resident of SltJO Kaysakat,Brgy. San Jose, Antipolo9ty. It was gathered that at around 9:30 p.m. Thursday, the suspect went t the office of Barangay Guitnang Bayan chalrwoman Della Bautista 59, wherein the former allegedly demanded '?2,OOO as prot€ctio~ money that w~uld also serve as revolutfonary taxes. The suspect was ~rrested ;n the act of receiving the money. (Madelynne Dominguez) .

Viray said two soldiers, S I Sgt. Albert Pamitan and Pfe. Ferdinand Causon, suffered minor injuries and were rushed to the Robillo District Hospital in Calinan district. "Despite the incident, our desire to reach out to the people and provide security assistance to those who extend basic services in remote areas will not falter," Viray said. 'Meanwhile, four communist rebels reportedly involved in extortion activities were killed in a clash with Army troops in Lopez, Quezon yesterday. The Army's 85th Infantry Battalion deployed its men to Barangay Periafrancia after receiving reports from residents about the presence of NPA guerrillas in their community, said Col. Generoso Bolina, spokesman of the Armed Forces' Southern Luzon Command. - Edith Regalado, Alexis Romero

in a 3D-minute firefight," he said.

• LUCENA CITY

4 rebels slain

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FOUR suspected New People's Army rebels were kill.ed in an encounter with Army soldiers in Lopez. Quezon, on Friday, said COl. Eduardo Ana, head of the Army's 201 st Infantry Brigade. . A group of soldiers were in Barangay Pefiafrancia to verify the reported presence of armed men in the area when they engaged about 10 rebels in a firefightataround 12:1.0 p.m. He said the rebels retreated to different directions, leaving behind their slain and wounded comrades. Ano said the three other rebels who were critically . wounded in the gun battle also died later. "The ambulance was already at the site to bring the wounded rebels to the hospital but they did not make it," Ano·said over the phone. He identilied the three dead rebels as Rogelio ~onterde. alias "Ka Bibit;" one no. (02 alias "Ka Jun,"and one alias "Ka Lila." The tou rth rebel has yet to be identified. Delfin T. Mallari Jr., Inquirer Southern Luzon

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Reds killed in Quezon
Two of the rebels died on the spot after the 10-minute firefight. Two others expired while being evacuated

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By Mario J. Mallari and Gina PeraHa-EIorde
Four New People's Army (NPA) rebels, including an amazon, were killed during a clash with Army troops in Quezon province shortly after noontuneyesterda~ Mili:tarySouthemInzon Commard (Soleom) spokesman Col. Generoso Bolina said elements of the Army's 85th Infantry Battalion (IB) were

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by mili.taIy medical teams, No casualty was reported on the government side. Recovered from the scene were two M-16 rifles, a baby annalite rifle and an M-653 rifle. Meanwhile,too youngmembers of the NPA gunned down a municipal councilor outside a corwenience store in Dolores, Eastern Samar on Friday ~hoorothe~cmm~of~ Penafrancia in Lopez town to check morning. The fatality was identified as on reported extortion activities by a Bonifacio Tan Jr., a councilor of the . bandofNPArebels. . Bolina said the team of Lt. said town. Tan was shot at about 7:30 a.m., Frederick dela Torre was innnediateIy engaged by the six NPA when he had just come from his rebels, who forcibly entered the brother's house in Barangay 3 and house of civilian Zenaida Guzo at dropped by a store. The suspects reportedly shot Tan from behind, around 12:10 p.rn. hitting the victim twice in the head "The rebels fired their guns when my soldiers approached the house ... and other parts of his body. Dolores police chief, Insp. Jerome they refused to surrender despite being surrounded by soldiers," said Camacho said the suspects casually 85th IE commander Lt. Col. Oliver walked outside the store, boarded a motorcycle a;"'::' i1.<;r~~d.p. t. Maquillng.

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Military Turns Over Infra Projects
CAMP PANACAN, Davao City (PNA) - A total of five barangay infrastructure projects (BIPs) worth P10 million recommended through the Philippine Army's Kalayaan sa Barangay Project (KEP) were turned over on Wednesday to the residents of Banaybanay, Davao Oriental. Major Rosa Maria Christina Manuel, executive officer of the loth CivilMilitary Operations Battalion, said the projects comprised of the Pintatagan Bridge, Puntalinao Water System Expansion, San Vicente Water System Expansion, Sitio Buhangin Footbridge and Mapagba port. She said the organizers pushed the inauguration and turnover of the P3.76-million BIP-Mapagba boatlanding despite heavy rains Wednesday. "TheBIPsaimtoaccelerateeconom. ic growth inMindanao and ensure that as manypeople as possible benefit from the said economic growth," Manuel said . The Growth Equity for Mindanao (GEM)-United states Assistance for International Development (USAID) supported the projects on which the benefits are equitably distributed and, to help bring about and consolidate peace in the area. Meanwhile, the turnover of the port was graced by Davao Oriental Vice Governor Mayo Almario, councilDrs from Banaybanay and representa. tives from GEM, USAID.

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THE PHIUP~'

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April 2012

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killed in clash
Sy Gemi FOll"maran
LOPEZ;Quezou -- Four alleged communist guerillas, including an amazon, were killed in a firefight with Army troops in Barangoy Pefiafrancia yesterday. Army's _201s~ Infantry Brigade commander Col. Eduardo An said one of the slain rebels were identified as lias "Bibit," the alleged platoon leader of Amlay 1, operating in Southern.Quezon. Ailo told Southern Luzon Command chief Lt. Gen. Roland Detabali the fire fight erupted after soldiers from the 85th Infantry Battalion responded to a report that an armed group was at the area mulcting businessmen and residents. After the firefight, the soldiers recovered two M-16 Armalite rilles, a Baby Armalite rifle, ammunition and personal belongings of the slain suspected rebels.

4 'Iebels'

Soldiers hit for civilians'death
SAN FRANCISCO~ Quezon - Despite the military's claim of a legitimate encounter, a human rights group condemned the killing of three civilians during an encounter with New People's Army rebels last week in Barangay Butanguiad. A fact-finding mission ofKarapa tan-Quezon identified the victimsas Cesar' Monterolyo, 44; Marcelino Mandado, 18; and Diosdado Ebanez, 21. Karapatan-Quezon secretary general Samson Castillo blamed soldiers from the 74th Infantry Battalion based in Sitio Malamig, Barangay Sto. Nino for the victims' death. Castillo said the victims were mistaken for rebels in the encounter which took place on April 12. Monterolyo's wife, Elsa, said her husband was not an NPArebel. Mandalo's mother, Leticia, said she had been searching her son and eventually found his body at a funeral parlor guarded by policemen and soldiers. Ebanes' family said they only identified Diosdado through the tattoo on his upper arm and an earring because his face was badly disfigured by gunshots. The Karapatan said the victim's family asked their help for the proper burial ofDiosdado butthe police and military elements tried to take his body for burial in a shallowpit. . Gemi Formaran

1 killed as US boat rams fishing vesi~1
A FISHERl\4!N died while his son was wounded when a 5p~~oat owned .bythe US military collided with their fishing vessel Wednesday night in Basilan. Philippine Army's l04th Infantry Brigade commander Col. Ricardo Visaya said the fatality identified as Ahbamm Juhurin succumbed to a severe head injury. . [uhurin's 20-year-old son was taken to Camp Navarro Hospital in Zamboanga City. Reports reaching Camp Crarne showed the incident took place past 7 p. m. in the waters off Barangay Baluk-Baluk near HadjiMuhtamad town.) Investigation showed soldiers of the US Joint Special Operation Task Force were on their way back to Zamboanga City with their Filipino colleagues when the incident happened, 'Thesoldiers were said to have come from a medical civic action program in Isabela City, Basilan. · Visaya said the US speedboat failed to notice the ·fishing vessel because it had no light, AFP-Western Mindanao Command spokesman Lt. ·Col Randolph Cabangbang said the US Embassy provided financial assistance to the victim's family. Zaida delos Reyes-Palanc:a

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Pinoy fishermen protest presence of Chinese ships
ANGELES CITY. - Filipio fishermen are protesting 'hinas "bullying" in Panatag ;carbQrough) Shoal off Zamales, saying the presence of its vessels in Philippine territorial waters is threatening their livelihood. ' In a tetter addressed to
By DING CERVANTES

Chinese Ambassador Ma Keqing, the fishermen - belonging to the militant Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamarnal-

akaya rig Pilipinas (Parnalakaya) .:« condemned in strongest terms the perpetual arrogance and political bullying of China despite repeated calls from the Filipino people to ease the political tension and exhau.st all diplomatic remedies to resolve

. diplomatic remedies to resolve the Scarborough (Panatag) standoff," Turn to Page 3 Panatag Shoal is only 124miles from the based but this is our milestone step toward Zambales coast and is well within the counour democratic evolution of some 110 year try's 200-mile exclusive economic zone. vis-a-vis China's 5,000 years of culture anc "Madam Ambassador, this extreme survival as an 'empire'," he said. show of political arrogance in ScarborHe said his proposals are justified "be ough Shoal is unacceptable and a direct c~~s~ collectively the human rights of thE affront to the collective sovereign rights Filipinos are wantonly trespassed by Chi of the Filipino fisherfolk and the more na by sheer military power." than 90 million Filipinos all over the coun"Shake the tree, scare the monkeys try," the Pamalakaya letter signed by the That's their tack," Haresco said, addinj group's chairman Fernando Hicap read. the Philippines cannot fully rely on the . "We deplore 'Beijing government's lack US, its traditional security ally. . _of diplomatic humility and moral reasonFor the US to defend its former colony ability," he said. ., . there needs to be an approval of the U~ Congress, he said. . "Beijing's bullying will affect fishing activities of not less than 200,000 small . :'In other word~ there must be a declafishermen. and commercial fishing operaration of ar. In this 21st century, economtions in Zambales Bay and nearby Lingayen ICleveragmg of giants is more sophistiGulf that encompass the coastal provinces Boycott ;ated. China knows it does not, need a .. Pearl Harbor' alleged treachery againsl of Zambales, Pangasinan, La Union, 11ocos For Ang Kas~r:gg~ party-list ,Rep. Ted the US to go to war," Haresco said. Sur and Ilocos Norte," Pamalakaya added. Haresco, t~e Ph1~lppmes may fight ?ack "China's placement in US treasury The group accused the Chinese of by boycott:ng Ch~~ese products andfilmg bonds of $1 trillion states that money talks. "scaring small Filipino fisherfolk sourc~ cas~ ~gall1stfBJelJlr:g 7f~oJ)ethe Interna-We don't even merit exchange, rate quoing their livelihood from the productive fishing area" by deploying "battle ready tlO~ca oubrt0. ll.IlshCet d "f Ph.I·... hi tations in global news and magazines like rna ..asica y sate . ,1 1 lppmes The Economist while C warships and psywar flying aircraft." am.b a di 1aan d Laos cannot project ItS sovereignty over sup- rates are quoted" h ld . "The best way to resolve the Scarborposen.' disputed islands, then all bets BayanMunap'artye_sl1~sltR' eor t ti ough Shoal standoff and the long-running d." h id . presen a ives cance 11 e, e Sal . N eri Colmenares and d C·dispute in Spratly between China and the "It' .1b . Chi reo oro asmo IS slm. ya p econorrucs. 111ameanwhile urged M'a 1 Philippines is engage in fraternal and heart. t. domi out th .. acanang to i 0 rmmeJUS wants to ominate e strategicstraits, diately file a case against China before the to-heart diplomatic discourse that will put Turn to Page.9 International Tribunal on the Law of the over and above and principally consider the Sea (ITL05). collective interest of both the Chinese and From Page 3 . "With the filing of a case, it would be on the Filipino people," it pointed out. . a more level playing field considering that China also drew condemnation from which controls some 56 percent of global the. Ch~n~segovernmenr would just bully the militant Kilusang Mayo Uno, which trade. So let's support P-Noy. Let's boy- us If this ISsettled bilaterally" Casillo said. also scored the Aquino administration for cott Chinese prod ucts," Hares~o! vice "Besides, we have strong legal basis for allowing bigger US presence in the country. chairman of the House comrru tt~e on the case considering our ownership of the "China is arrogantly asserting its claim, trying to intimidate us from asserting our - small business and entrepreneurship de- - shoal is recognized by the UN Conven~Ivelopment, said. J tion on' the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS). sovereign right over the Scarborough "We will suffer. We will be in pain as ~Another point is that we have been exerShoat" KMU chair Elmer Labog said in some 25 p~rcent of our economy is Chll:a cising effective control on this regime of a statement. islands up till now and is even part of the

Pin 0Y

From Page 1

"'Weshould stand up for our country's sovereignty, our full control over our territory. We must not allow any foreign power, whether China or the US, to use their superior military strength to bully us around," KMU said. He also said the growing presence of US forces in the Philippines and in other parts of Asia is also a troubling development. "Aside from being a clear and gross violation of our sovereignty, the growing military presence of the US in the country may also be used as an excuse by China to try to justify its aggressive statements and actions," the militant group pointed out. "It is sheer foolishness for Aquino to engage in hostile actions against China, sending US-donated ships in the disputed waters thinking the US would back him up" it said. Labog claimed the US wants the tensions in the West Philippine Sea to escalate so it can justify its bigger presence in the region.

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OfFICE OF THE ARMY CHIEF PUBLIC AFFAIRS - Email add:OaCpa_bpa@yahoo.com - Tel no. (02) 892·1693, Local: 5287, 5295 town of Masiriloc, ia~bales," he said. "This matter is best settled' between China and the Philippines through diplomatic means and using the international conventions. We do not need another bully likethe US in our backyard," the two lawmakers said in a joint statement. "We must also be wary of the US and its local lackeys because they are just playing up the issue so that the US military can further expand and intervene in our affairs." As protests in the Philippines over Chinese incursion continue, a source in the Philippine Coast Guard said a third Chinese vessel - a gunboat - arrived at . the shoal yesterday afternoon. "The situation is not hostile for as long one would engage," the source, who requested anonymity;. stressed. The source did not identify the vessel, although .Beijing-based newspaper China Daily had reported that Yuzheng 310, supposedly China's most advanced fishing patrol ship, had been deployed to protect the
.as no

--~.---Chinese fishermen in the shoal. Currently;only one Philippine vessel- BRP Pampanga - is in Panatag Shoal.

Still hopeful

In the face of the latest deployment, the Department of Defense said it still hopes China will not initiate action that might derail diplomatic efforts, ' "We hope that they (China) do not do ~any act jon thatmay derail or affect the current diplomatic initiatives toward the peaceful resolution of the Scarborough Shoal (issue)," said DND spokesman Peter Galvez in a phone interview, , "At this point, that (arrival of Yuzheng 310) is still speculative," he pointed out. "It's okay if it goes around within international waters, when it goes within the, EEZ, that's a different story." Chinese media reported the deployment of the patrol ship, described as "no stranger to high profile tasks" and a "veteran in escort missions." , "Yuzheng 310 is now on its way to the South China Sea. It's charged with safeguarding Chinese fishermen's, interests in ,the area," Chinese website china.org.cn reported, "Chinese media said it would be deployed to the West Philippine Sea but it did not state Scarborough Shoal, Soas long as it stays in international waters, we do not have problems with that," Galvez said. "We are still for the diplomatic solution. Webelieve our counterparts are also ...... -------cooperating with the diplomatic initia- ----------------------. OfFICEOFTHEARl tives," he added. la_hpa@yahoo.com-Telno.(02)892.1693.locaS:5287.5295

As this developed, 14 congresswomer~left for Beijing yesterday to discuss . ';lth.thel: counterparts the country's ter. ritorialdispute With China. Pangasinan Rep. Gina de. Ven~cia led the group. . De Venecia said they hope to tackIe. the country's territorial dispute . with China, particularly over Panatag Shoal, in their talks with Communist Party of China's central committee members. She said the effort is their "small sha~e in helping ease tension and perhaps achieve eventually a friendly solution to . the ptob~e.ms!n the disput~d areas of the '. West Philippine Sea that IS fair, honorable, workable, and mutually beneficial. to both our countries." "As unofficial envoys of peace, we are one with the Chinese government in its call to 'focus more on China-Philippines friendship, peace and stability'," she said . . "We also believe that as parliamentarians, it is our duty to help find ways and means to support the transformation of a zone of conflict into a Zone of Peace, . Frien~ship, Cooperation and Development m the disputed areas, while respec~~ng the. sovereignty of our countries, she said. _ "We hope our visit will remind both sides that our people have associations older, closer, and more enduring than these momentary differences," she said. She added that their visit would "further strengthen both our countries' commitmer:t to the [oint Declaration signed by President Aqumo and China's President Hu Jintao in September 2011 that affirmed .2012 and 2013 as the PhilipplI;,es-Ch~naYear~ of Friendly Exchanges. r: WIth AleXIS Romero, Jess Diaz, Paolo Romero, Evelyn Macairan, May. en Jaymalin .

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US vessel rams boat off Basilan;Pinoy fisherman killed
A United States military boat rammed into a small fishing boat in Basilan province on Wednesday, killing a fisherman while another one was injured, a military official yesterday said. Col. Ricardo Visaya, commander of the Army's l04th Brigade and concurrent chief of the Joint Task Force Basilan, said a US
,

Mark-5boat, with American servicemen on board, had just delivered medicines in Hadji Mutamad Island in 1sabela for a medical mission of the Special Forces when the accident happened around 7
p.m.

"TIley(US troops) were on their way
Turn to page 3

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US vessel rams boat off Basilan; Pinoy fisherman killed
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Frompage1 back, it was already dark and incidentally the small boat was also on its way back without any light, so it was not noticed," he added. Visaya said the US troops, assigned to the Joint Speical Operations Task Force-Philippines (JSOTF-P)were on their way back to Zamboanga City. The incident resulted in the death of one fisherman while his son was injured but is out of danger. Their identities were not immediately made available. No one from the US side was injured. According to Visaya, the family of the victims had agreed to settle the matter and admitted that it was an accident. "I heard it was aU settled. The family accepted that it was really an accident ... although we know that they (US troops) are liable but then it was settled with the intervention of former (Lantawan

town) Mayor Pahira (Ismael)," Visaya said. The Department of Foreign Affairs yesterday confirmed that a Filipino fisherman was killed in Basilan province in Mindanao but cannot say if he died after being hit by a speeding US military speedboat: Foreign Affairs spokesman Raul Hernandez said the incident was not related to the ongoing military exercises between the Philippines and the US as Mindanao is not among the listed sites of the activity. Washington is keeping a rotating presence of forces in Mindanao to help train Philippine authorities fight local and foreign terrorists there, but Washington maintained its troops are not engaged in combat operations. Foreign.troops are barred by the Constitution to engage in combat operation in the Philippines. "Our authorities are now investigating this incident;" Hernandez said, adding that

Filipino soldiers were onboard the US vessel with the American troops when the incident happened. "They tried to help and make sure that the Filipino will not die but it was to no avail," he said. The US Embassy, for its part, expressed full cooperation to the investigation regarding the matter as it extended its condolences to the family of the fatality. US Embassy information officer Tina Malone stressed the incident has nothing to do with the ongoing Balikatan 2012 joint exercises between Filipino and US troops. UI should point out that the boat incident was in fact unrelated to Balikatan ...we offer our heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of the victim. We understand that appropriate authorities have begun investigation into the incident and JSOTF-P is cooperating fully," Malone stressed. Mario J. Mallari and Michaela P. del Callar

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April 2012

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Probe sought on sea mishap involving US soldiers
ZAMBOANGA CITY-Former 'Mayor Tahira Ismael of .Lantawan, Basilan, has sought 'an investigation of the April 18 .sea mishap involving American soldiers, which led to the death lSf a relative, and the wounding of another, "We wanted a fair and just investigation, we wanted to know how it happened," she said, Based on information that Is-mael got, her cousin Ahbam .Iuhurin, 56, and his 26-year-old son Akhul were on their way 'home after fishing off Muhamad -Adjultown on April 18 when a ;US Navy Mark V craft hit their 'small boat. Juhurin died from head injuries while 'Akhul remained in critical condition at the military hospital here, ' "My cousin had been fisherman all his life and that sea lane they were passing through was 'a common lane for fisherfolk," Ismael said as she expressed doubt it was the, fishing boat that hit the us Navy sea craft She said they also wanted to know why authorities tried to keep the incident from the public, , Ismael said authorities only ~onfirmed the incident "after I ~arted talking, they also issued 'a statement."

Baffling

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She said it was also baffling > "'hy the American soldiers on -board the US sea craft, which was fully equipped with radar and lights, failed to see the fishingboat. . Ismael said it, was good that the American soldiers brought the victims to the military hospital here but that was not enough. Juhurin, a resident of Barangay Baluk-Baluk in Muhamad Adjul, had a big family and there should be financial assistance, she said. Lt. Col. Randolph Cabangbang, spokesperson of the military's Western Mindanao Command, said the police were investigating the incident. Basilanpolice chief Senior Supt. Alex Lineses said the investigation was being conducted jointly by the military and the Isabela City police. But Isabela City Police director Senior Supt. Allan Nazarro said he was not aware of any investigation in connection with the sea mishap. Tina Malone, information officer of the US Embassy in 'Manila, said in a text message 'to the INQUIRER that they were saddened by the incident. "Despite rescue efforts, one local fisherman was killed, and another injured in the accident. We offer our heartfelt condolences to the family and friends .ef the victim. We understand that ,appropriate authorities have begun an immediate inves'tigation into the incident and the (Joint Special Operation -Task Force Philippines) is cooperating fully," Malone said. Julie Alipala, Inquirer Mindanao

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US soldiers in mishap not part of Balikatan
ZAMBOANGA CITY - The military yesterday denied that the US soldiers involved in a mishap off Basilan that killed a fisherman, were part of the ongoing Balikatan exercise. Lt. Col. Randolf Cabangbang, spokesman of the Western Mindanao Command (Westmincom), said the US servicemen involved in the incident, whose names were withheld pending an investigation, were on routine mission. Fisherman Akbam [uhurin, 53, was kilh:id while his son, Akjul, 20, was seriously injured when a speeding Mark 5 US speedboat cut through their motorized banca in the waters of Basilan last Wednesday night. Father and SOn were from Pilas Island, now known as Hadji Mutamad town. . According to the maritime police, the [uhurins were cruising from Isabela City to Hadji Mutamad when the speeding US Mark 5 speedboat sliced through their motorized banca. The American soldiers promptly returned, rescued the Juhurins and provided first aid before rushing them to the military hospital for further treatment, the maritime police said. Cabangbang said the investigation ongoing while the US forces have agreed to provide the Juhurin family with the needed assistance. "They were not part of the ongo- . ing Balikatan exercise but they are regular servicemen under the JSOTF-P (joint Special Operations Task Force-Philippines) who were on their routinary mission because they have ongoing humanitarian projects in Basilan," Cabangbang said. - Roel Parefio, Alexis Romero, Ding Cervantes

is

US soldiers show their Filipino counterparts techniques in subduing enemies during the ongoing [oint Philippines-US 'Salikatan' military exercises in Angeles City, Pampanga yesterday. JONJON VlcaNCIO

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But Palparan, who is wanted in connection with the abduction and disappearance of two By Dona Z. pazzibugan University of the Philippines coand Carmela Reyes-Estrope eds in 2006, is another case alInquirer Central Luzon together, Bartolome said. Bartolome was actually THE CHIEF of the Philippine asked whether the well-conNational Police, rio less, has adnected fugitives have been able mitted that capturing fugitive to elude capture because they Army general Jovita Palparan are being protected by influenwas proving to be "difficult" as tial people. the former military commander. Sidestepping the question, has been trained in exactly the the PNP chief said: "In the case same way as his pursuers. of General, Palparan, he is PNP chief Director General trained and he knows what' to Nicanor Bartolome said that do. That's what makes it maybe with the entire PNP forces all difficult for us because we have over the country on alert for the . been trained the same way." country's most high-profile "In the case of the other fugifugitives, it will be 'Just a mattives, maybe it will just be a matter of time" before the authoriter of time before they can be ties run down their quarry. properly accounted for," he said. He mentioned in particular Palparan was ordered arrestDinagat Rep. Ruben Ecleo Jr; ed last year by a Malolos court whose conviction for the 2005 after the Department of Justice murder of his wife was recently charged him and three other uphe~ci by the Supreme Court, soldiers with kidnapping and serious illegal detention of PNP CHIEFIAll missing student activists Sherlyn Cadapan and Karen Empefio, He carries a P500,OOO bounty for his capture. Lt. Col. Felipe Anotado and M/Sgt. Edgardo Osorio, who are in active service, have turned themselves in and are now detained in the Army's Fort Bonifacio headquarters. The third accused soldier, M/Sgt. Rizal Hilario, who has been reported absent without leave since 2008, remains at large. The A...'TI1ed Forces has said its -------OFFICE OF THE ARMY CHIEF PUBLIC AFFAIRS - Email add: oacpa_hl troops are not involved in the 3, Local: 5287, 5295 L-____________________________________________________ manhunt fur the furmer commander of its Northern LUZon Command (Nalcorn) since the PNP and the National Bureau of

Palparan 'difficult'

PNP chief: Hunting

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and former Palawan governor Joel Reyes and the latter's brother, Caron Mayor Mario Reyes, who ~re both charged with the 2011 murder of broadcaster-environmentalist Gerry Ortega.

A different case

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OFFICI Investigation,

an agency under the DOJ, are already on the case.

Nationwide manhunt
Bartolome said a nationwide manhunt is ongoing for the other high-profile fugitives. "(In the case of) Ecleo, I have instructed not only the regions .' in Mindanao, especially in . Caraga and Regions 9 and 10, not only the areas where he usually frequented before, but all other regions as well. It's nationwide," he said. In the case of Joel Reyes, Bartolome said his being an ex-gov. ernor will not help him elude arrest forlong. ' "He could not have been friends with everyone. Even if he has contacts, not all of them will be his friends or will help him. I still believe there are more people who will want to see them captured," he said. A P300,OOO reward has been put up by friends and supporters of Ortega for information leading to the arrest of the Reyes brothers. Bartolome believes Ec1eo and the Reyes brothers are still in the country. "We're not getting any report that they are now outside, that they have left the country. We are still hoping that they are still here," he said.

Petition rejected
Malolos Judge Teodora Gonzales, meanwhile, has dismissed Palparan's appeal for a preliminary investigation of the kidnapping charges against him, saying the general had been accorded due process with all his legal rights protected. Gonzales said Palparan and his coaccused soldiers were given due process and properly informed of the nature and cause of the accusations against them, as shown by their having filed four counteraffidavits and rejoinders in July and August 2011. ; "With the filing of their respective counteraffidavits and rejoinder affidavits, the accused answered the allegations imputed against them. Thus, it

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in the custody of the Philipp in? Army Custodial Center (PACG) in Fort Bonifacio. . State and private prosecutors had asked the court to transfer Osorio and Anotado to the Philippine National Police Custodial Center (PNPCC) in Camp Crame to ensure they do not receive special treatment . Osorio and Anotado, however, invoked Executive Order No. 106, which grants military personnel the right to remain under military custody while facing trial. JOVITO PALPARAN Gonzales said that based 01;1 cannot be said they were denied an ocular inspection, the PNPCC their rights to be informed of in Camp Crame falls short of the the nature and cause of the ac- minimum standards required cusation against them," Gonza- for a detention facility while the les said in her decision issued PACCin Fort Bonifacio was more on April 3, which was obtained in keeping with international by the INQUIRERn Thursday .. o minimum standards. Lawyer Narzal Mallares, lead "Even if the accused are not counsel for Palparan and the covered by EO 106,· although three soldiers, petitioned Gon- the court has already ruled othzales last December to grant his erwise, the mere fact that they clients a preliminary investigaare already detained in a much tion, suspend the proceedingsbetter facility, where protection and recall the warrants of arrest and security are likewise affordthat the court had issued ed;' [means] the court cannot against them. just withdraw from them such Mallares' omnibus motion al- enjoyment," she said. so asked the court to quash or Gonzales also noted that Anrecall a hold departure order is- otado will need medical attensued against Palparan and the tion because he is undergoing three soldiers. treatment for colon cancer. Palparan was last seen in Private prosecutor Edre public on Dec. 19, 2011 at the Olalia yesterday welcomed Diosdado Macapagal InternaGonzales' ruling "as it basically tional Airport at Clark when he sustains our position all along attempted to board a flight out and is in accord with the law of the country but was stopped and jurisprudence." by immigration officers. "It only further proves that But Gonzales said the court Palparan et al are just obstructwill accept legal motions or ap- ing and frustrating justice at all peals which Palparan's lawyers costs," said Olalla, secretary may file on behalf of their ab- . general of the National Union of sent client, as well as take cog- People's Lawyers. nizance of the omnibus motion .With the judge's order, the without Palparan and Hilario government should step up the having to submit themselves to manhunt for Palparan and his coaccused, he said. the custody of the court. He said private prosecutors Military custody upheld are studying whether to file a The judge has scheduled the motion for reconsideration 011 arraignment of Osorio and Ano- the ruling concerning Anotado tado for April 23. and Osorio's continued military Gonzales also allowed the custody. With a report from TJ two accused soldiers' remaining Burgonia

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Judge rejects Palparan bid for new probe
By EDU PUNAY and DINOBALABO '

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The Department of Justice (DOJ) yesterday scored against retired Army Maj. Gen. Jovita Palparan in the case against him before the Malolos City court over the alleged, enforced disappearance of University of the Philippines student-activists Sherlyn Cadapan and Karen Empefto in 2006. , This, after Judge Teodora Gonzales of the Malolos Regional Trial Court Branch 14 dismissed Palparan's motion seeking another preliminary investigation by the DOJ on the charges of kidnapping and illegal serious detention filed against him. ' : "..r In' a nine-page omnibus order, Gonzales also junked Palparans bid to suspend the proceedings, recall the arrest warrant and hold departure order it issued against him and the other accused. "When the information filed against the accused is valid on its face and absent any manifest error, grave abuse of discretion or prejudice on the part of the panel of prosecutors, the courts must respect the exercise of such discretion in the determination of probable cause," the court ruled. Gonzales dismissed Palparan's claim that his constitutional right to due process was violated because he was not informed by the charges for

which he was investigated. Still in hiding, Palparan filed the motion through his lawyer and questioned the charges filed against him. He argued that they were only investigated for rape, serio us physical injuries, arbi- ' trary detention, maltreatment of prisoners, grave threats, ' grave coercion, and violation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Punishment. But the court said it conducted its judicial deterrnination ~'probable cause and , agreed wit1j~. DOJ . ,fin~ ij after a revie\l$':6fthe ~d~~" ' and documents submitted by both camps, ' ' The court already dismissed last January Palparan's earlier motion seeking to stop his indictment. Gonzales cited his hiding from the authorities, saying Palparan cannot seek such relief until he surrenders and submits himself to the jurisdicHan of the court. The government has put up a PI-million bounty for Palparan's arrest. ' Indicted along with Palparan are Army S/Sgt. Edgardo Osorio, Lt. CoL Felipe Anotado of the 25th Infantry Battalion, and retired M/Sgt. Rizal Hilario of the 24th Infantry Battalion.
I

I Plea Junked,.:~ ~~ e. .
A Bulacan court judge junked yesterday the petition of fugiti~ ex-Army official Jovito Palparan and two others to recall the warrant of arrest issued to him .and to suspend the trial in connection with the abduction and disappearance of two Universtiy of the Philippines students in 2006 which tagged him as the mastermind. In a nine-page omnibus ,ordet, Judge Teodora Gonzales of the ~al~IOf$? Bulacan Regional Trial Court Branch 14 junked all four motions filed byPalparan.and four other~" ~ponden~s inclu~g motion t~ 4ua:~ information filed 'against him ijy tHe Department of Justice (DoJ); rec~ of the warrant of arrest issued the court; to take his name ofthe lift of the hold departure order; and yo suspend the proceedings. .t , The said ?ther respondents wIio, filed themotion were retired M/Sgt. Rizal Hilario and S/Sgt. Edgardo Osorio. f This developed as human righ'~ watchdog Kfirapatan has urged t~ Aquino admfnistratton to abide~' , the ~ec. mmendations of the Unit :. o Nations Human Rights Committe e and find Palparan, ' ,. , Karapatan issued theplea the eve , of ~he ninth death of Ed!' . ,r Marcellana and Eddie Gumanf who were arrested l>y SOldie~~ im4 ;

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ticip~ted ~n~ fact-finding mis~io~ GLoria,Mmdoro Occidental. Marcellana was the secretary geileral of Karapatan in Southern T.g~logwhile Guruanoywas the chairman Of the Katipunan ng mga SamallaUg Magbubukid'sa Timog Katagalugan ] (Kasama-TK) when they were takoo by the soldiers .. (Leonard Postraqo and Marvyn Benaning) '",

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, By PIA LEE·BRAGO

Believing that the world is watching China's behavior in Panatag (Scarborough) Shoal, the Philippines declared yesterday it will bring its territorial dispute with China to the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS).
Manila said it will "unilat, eraIly" seek ITLOS' interven-' tion if China will not join it in submitting their claims and defending their respective positions before the United Nations-backed tribunal. Foreign Affairs spokespman Raul Hernandez said China violated the agreement with the Philippines not to undertake any action that would aggravate and escalate the situation in Panatag Shoal, by deploying more ships in addition to the two Chinese maritime vessels. involved in a standoff with a Philippine Coast Guard ship. Hernandez emphasized that the world is watching what is happening in Panatag. "As (Foreign Affairs) Secretary (Albert) del Rosario was saying, the world knows that China has more ships and

He added, "We understand that the world is watching and the issue at hand has a wider implication on how China is asserting its territorial claims, which have no basis in international law, so we hope that China will behave as a responsible member of the international community"
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r-, airPdlanesthar;tthe PhiliPt··Ie A,FFAIRS - Email add:oaepahpa@yahoo.com L__ ~ore an we can compe e pmes ''in this manner. We can't solve this case in this manner," Hernandez said in~'press ~)fiefing~
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Phi to bring
He said that the Philippines, a civilized nation~ is. trying .to e plore all avenues and invited China togo to ITLOS as the proper and competent forum to decide on the dispute. "If China would not join us to go to mos, then our legal team is preparing to go to ITLOS unilaterally 'in order to have this resolved in that proper forum," Hernandez said. China rejected the Philippines' invitation to go to ITLOS, saying the issue should be resolved through a diplomatic solution. "That's why what we need to do is to wait for the confirmation when we meet again fora meeting on this issue," he said . • The Philippine side will demand an answer and explanation from China for deploying additional vessels and an aircraft, which is in violation of the agreement. . Del Rosario and Chinese Ambassador Ma Keqing agreed not to aggravate the situation by any action. "And we think this is an action that aggravates and escalates the tension, so in our ne t talk we'll ask China why they're trying to do this. We'll . ask them to clarify why they have violated our agreement not to escalate, not to aggravate this situation in the Panatag Shoal," he said. . The Philippines admitted that the country could not compete with

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historical claim in a Philippine posi- . tion paper on Bajo de Masinloc and the waters within its vicinity. China in terms of ships and aircraft Baja de Masinloc (Panatag Shoal) but it is confident it can defend its is not an island and is not part of claims and position before the ITLOS. the Spratlys, making the current Hernandez said China will also action of the Chinese surveillance be asked about its sincerity in seek- vessels in the Philippines' Exclusive ing a diplomatic solution to the Economic Zone (EEZ) inconsistent issue. with its right of freedom of navigaThree foreign vessels and two tion and in violation of the soversmall boats were spotted on Wednes- eign rights of the Philippines under day in Panatag Shoal, the same day United Nations Convention on the Philippine-commissioned MT Saran- Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), it said. gan! left the area after conducting an China is claiming Baja de Masinarcheological survey. loc to have been discovered by the China maintained that the Panatag Yuan Dynasty based on historical Shoal dispute should be resolved arguments and reflected on various through "friendly" consultations official Chinese maps and named by but its actions are contrary to its China in various official documents. declaration. But the Philippines said Chinese Chinese embassy spokesman assertion based on historical claims Zhang Hua urged the Philippines must be substantiated by a clear not to aggrayate the incident but historic title. he stressed China's commitment to settle the dispute through friendly Implications consultations, Presidential Communications De. ,,"We want friendly efforts to solve, vel?pinent and Strategic Planning It, he told The STAR.. . Office Secretary Ricky Carandang, The .Department of Fon~lgnAffairs meanwhile, said it would be up to the (DFA), IS. firm that the claims should DFAto decide whether the Philippines be subrrutted to the ITLOS where both could unilaterally bring the case to the countries will defend their position. mos. Del Rosario said China and the PhilAs I said earlier this week, for two ippines should proceed to m.DS for a countries to face the international tribu"legal" 'and"lastin g" resolution.instead na 1re9.Ulresthe consen t 0fb 0th pru. .. es. . ~..,.; of a diplomatic solution which would Now if one party does not, we have to most likely be temporary. study what we can do on our own. And The Philippines refuted China's I believe the DFA is already studying
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possible actions," he said. . Carandang also warned China yesterday that its actions in Panatag Shoal could have implications on the region's security and stability as well as on the claims of other countries in the West Philippine Sea. He said there was no reason for the Philippines to get intimidated by China's deployment of a gunboat to Baja de Masinloc because the dispute over the area involved not only the Philippines but the whole region. "We will not be intimidated. The Philippines may be a small country but we have a principle that we are fighting for," Carandang said. "This is not just for the Philippines but for the good of the whole region." Asked if the Philippines is capable of .de~~nd~ng its territory; Carandang said: I will not answer that question categorically. I think we have an idea what the state of our Armed Forces is and what our capabilities are. But let me say this: There is full of examples of small countries that have fought for their rights and have succeeded. So we may be a small country but this is our national pride we're talking about, so it's not something that we could surrender." Carandang said the Aquino government would continue to talk with Chinese authorities as the Philippines is determined to find a peaceful solution to the issue. ."But we're also equally determined to assert our sovereignty over

what is our territory. And I'd like to. add also, while this issue has immediate implications for us and for China it also has long-term implications fa; the rest of the region - for stability in the region. If the Philippines loses this, this will have implications for other countries which have competing claims with China, particularly those affected by the nine-dash line. So this might look like an issue between the Philippines and China alon~ but actually the implications of this have effects on other countries aroun.d the reg~on:" C;arandang said, referring to China s nine-dash theory claiming the whole of the West.Philippine Sea. Carandang said the Palace would leave the tactical decisions of what to do next following China's aggressive actions to the security officials. On the possible arrest of those encroaching into Philippine waters, Carandang said: "I think you all understand this is a delicate situation and nobody wants to escalate tensions to the point where we will do something that we'll regret later on. "So the decision of whether or not we will more forcefully enforce our laws within our boundaries is, I think, ~ore of ~poli~cal ~d diplomatic question at this pomt. So we're not going to look at it Simply from'the legal point of view. We have to study our actions based on the implications diplomatically and politically," he said . - With Aurea Calica

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of Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) is groundless. "UNCLOS allows coastal states to claim a 200-nautical-mile EEZ, but coastal states have no rights to infringe on the inherent territory and sovereignty of other couptries. The Philippines asserts that Huangyan Island ,I,s closer to its territory, but in fact "geographical proximBy CARMEN N. PEDROSA ity" has long been dismissed by the international law. and practice as the principle of the solution of territoty ownership." . ' Both sides agreed to settle the incident through dif,lomatic means. In view of the complex situation in thit area, which involved Navy ship, public service vessels. and fishing boats, China's fishing boats left on April 13 in order to help defuse the situation, It is .a truism that unless we are "Departing from our good will of developing fully aware of the implications of friendly relations with the Philippines, we are ready-to events, we would not act intell iengage in further discussions with the Philippine side gently. And not being aware.iwe and try our best to settle the incident properly," !W will follow the herd, This is happenadded. . .,i ing now with partisan mediahigh** * . ;; lighting news to color our views on Over the week, I was in Batanes. It was a welcome the Spratly dispute. Neither the US respite from life in Manila, its pollution and its poisoned nor China will go to war on the ispolitics. 0y dau/?ihter, ~l [azeera's Veronica Pe.dro"pp lands dispute but they can "make ,~heard of It from friends 111 Bangkok and thought It WJ~.}l war" which is quite different.. The Philippines is a conworth a try ". especially because it now had a small venient ally to use for the purpose without confronting hotel with five-star accommodations - Fundacion China itself. 1 Pacita Abad, So off we. went to this place I had only Take this 'story headlined "Standoff continues, Philseen from Mandy N avasero' s beautiful pictures. Tl\e ippines and the us play war games." The implication reality surpassed even the best photography, ;; is that the US will go to war to protect the Philippines, . Coinz to Batanes, meeting the Ivatans and knowirig So the Philippine government under the leadership of their cuUu·re were like entering a time warp, Some ef Aquino plays the game to pretend that it will fight qf:f the guides said that it is believed that the Ivatans carne China because the us will be behind. it. That's what ww from the same group of indigenous people from Taigames are playing at. But the us and China are not wan but this is still in dispute. r: . making war noises, The Philippines is. It displays Whatever their origins, the Ivatans have preserved laughable ancient warship as its weapon for war but .~'. their culture, Asyrnbol of their preserved culture is tljll'! here is the big but. The US is behind it. Or is it really? typical Ivatan house made of stone to stand the force Hf . It may be a laughing matter but think of how many typhoon winds that often visit the ylace, The stones are wars come from unintended accidents. . patched together by a mixture 0 lime (dead coral~) The Philippine armed forces chief said without empaste. The roofs made of cogan endemic to Batane~ .: barrassrnent that "regional disputes and security issue's (CNP: A Japanese anthropologist Omoto made geneii'c in the South China Sea would be dealt with by strengthstudies of the Yami in Orchid Island.) . ening military ties with the United." That is neat They may be no different from Filipinos in other iiiShouldn't we know why we are being led to war? lands but the Ivatans are sohonest.they have an "Hon.,. * * (esty Cafe." You can buy some souvenirs or drink coffee The Chinese Embassy spokesman answered scm ~ or soft ~rinks and leave you~ payment in a smal! bo:X. (Accordmg to the Ivatan guide, an honesty cafe was questions, We are not taking sides, but we certainly csn attempted in the Ateneo but it failed.) , be better informed. He says that "the Huangyan IslanJi Batanes should be a template for tourism in the PhHhas been the traditional fishing ground of Chinese fishippines because it is not just about beaches or malls ~r ennen for generations."" ith can d os. I" ISJust b eau tif u I country WIt ro 11' hill san d t 1 mg 1 Recently. 12 Chinese fishing boats were harassed by water all around and a history. There are several tours, a Philippine Navy ship in the lagoon of Huangyan ISI was not brave enough to take the Sahtang tour b#land in the morning of April 10, The Chinese side lodged cause it meant a dangerous ride on a boat without representations with the Philippine side. '," outriggers that brings y_outo turbulent waters between . As far as the Chinese are concerned Huangyan Isthe Pacific Ocean and the South China Sea. : land is China's territory. "It is China that first disccvI did join the tour to what they called "Marlboro ered this island, gave it the name, incorporated it into Country." It was the site for dozens of grazing cows its territory, and exercised jurisdiction over it," he added. feeding on undulating hills of grass. From afar it seemtlH "The Philippine territory is set by a series of internathey did a lot of mowing on the hills, checkered with tional treaties, including the Treaty of Paris (1898), the hedges. No, They did not mow the hills to look like Treaty of Washington (1900) and the Treaty with Creat . lawns. It was the cows' grazing that smoothened t~ . Britain (1930), none of which ever referred to Huengyan grass on the hills, They eat only part of the grass as if tp Island or included this island into its territory. Unfll cut only the top. Hedges were used to ward ernsion'd 1997, the Philippine side has never disputed Chinat;~ As M~nilans used !o comfort we were h~ppy with jurisdiction of and development on Huangyan Island. ou~·stay In the Fundacl.o~ surrounded by Pacita Abad;:S On the other hand, the Philippines indicated on a num- --pamtmgs. She has exhibited aroul1? t~e ,",,:orld. 2 ber of occasions that Huangyan Island was beyond its add: oal If we never left ~hehotel room Wlt~ Its flve-~tar com.territory. :., . t, __ ~ f~rts we woul~ still have had the View of hills upon __j "According tothe international law, including United hills and the WIde blue sea from Our ver<:tnda. At m&ht Nations' Convention onIhe'Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), we ~ad a s.tarry, starry. sky. I got som.e wild flowers 111the Philippines' claim of the jurisdiction rights and soveluding WIld bluebernes. that grow in Mt. Itaya. I aifl ereignty rights ave! Huangyan Island with the arg.o-16- hopmg I can grow these m:atangas,

from A Distance

Are we being led to war? Batanes interlude

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Shooting Straight
By 8081T S. AVILA

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C-130s chop-chopped in Mactan?
Before I forget, when I left for Manila last Sunday, I couldn't help but notice that the remaining unflyable Lockheed C-130 Hercules cargo aircraft of the Philippine Air Force (PAF)based at the Ebuen Air Force base in Mactan have been sliced or chopped into separate pieces, which means they are obviously bound for someone'sjunkyard. These military aircraft are just sitting there for all the public to see, which brings us to ask, are these planes being sold to a junk dealer? Was this the proper way to dispose these government properties? Mind you, Mactan is unlike the famous "Boneyard" in Tucson, Arizona where hundreds of mothballed or junk airplanes are stored for safekeeping or broken for parts to be sold. Since the C-130 Hercules is still very much in use by many Air Forces around the world, r would like to believe that many of its internal parts can still be sold for a hefty price. Perhaps Philippine Air Force (PAF) officials ought to give us an explanation why these aircraft have been chopped into pieces.
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the high court's Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) on the travel ban against former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo and the government's inability to enforce a court-issued arrest order against former Palawan Governor Joel Reyes. Has it really come to this that one of the major pillars of our democracy .is cracking up because the two other coequal branches of government no longer respect the Judiciary? We'll, the litmus could be just around the corner when the SC comes up with its final decision on the Hacienda Luisita case or if the SC issues a TRO against the Comelec who purchased those highly unreliable PCOS "cheating" machines.
Abanganl '" * •

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Supreme Court (SC)Administrator Midas Marquez about that wave of defiance against the SCIwhich has brought a serious mistrust in our Judiciary. Special mention was Justice Secretary Leila de Lima's defiance in not honoring

I fully agree with the statement .of

Last Thursday, I finally fulfilled fl promise that I gave my friend, Rudy Bediones to make up in the country's most prestigious Rotary Club, the Rotary Club of Manila, which holds its meetings at the Manila Polo Club. Thanks to my good friend, Mr. Robert "Bobby" Joseph who fetched me from my hotel at the Makati Shang and made me his special guest. I come from the Rotary Club of Cebu, which WdS established in 1932,13 years after the found'ing of the Rotary Club of Manila. Hence we are the second oldest Rotary Club in the country and it was an honor to make up there. Turn to Page 14

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is already final. .. or whether he is merely testing the water: But we were in Binondo District on a tour with the Visaya What I did not expect was to see many old friends who are and Mindanao media last Monday and I interviewed a lot c members of this most prestigious Rotary Club. Aside from my people and asked who would be a strong mayoralty candid at, friends, Bobby Joseph and Rudy Bediones, I met with Obet for Manila in 20l3. Almost all of the people I talked with sak Pagdanganan, Roy ZOS3, Gen. Ramon Montano (Ret.), our that Mayor Lim was their man ... but they would vote fo: fellow Star columnist Babes Romualdez and yes, Manila Mayor Erap if he runs again for President. Well, I guess, the man tt beat in Manila is still Mayor Lim, who by the way is already Alfredo Lim. Ma or Lim had to make a statement or correction belying the fixing the damage seawall along Roxas Blvd. The Rotary Club of Manila's guest speaker was Palawan reports last Thursday that he put a stop to his future mayoralty who gave a special video rival, former Pres. Joseph "Erap" Estrada, from giving gifts to Mayor Edward Hagedorn on what he has done for Palawan ... like .his constituents in Manila. The Manila Mayor said, "If Erap presentation wants to give his money away to the poor people of Manila, I keeping its forest intact and growing and having the famous Underground River turned into a UNESCO World Heritage will cheer him on." only "Carbon neutral" I don't know if Erap's decision to run against Mayor Lim Site ... plus Palawan is the nation'

AVILA

From Page 13

Provin e. Afte the meeting, I noticed that Mayor Lim's vehicle was an un arked Toyota Fortuner, which should shame many mayor :w:ho pr~udly br<l;l1dish a "Mayor" plate number in theIr. of cial vehicles. Incidentally, Obet Pagdanganan is the pre~n?~'nt-elect fo~ this incoming year ... that means he is de~lte y not runmng for a public office. I dare say that being pre~l?e t of the ~otary Club of Manila is a more prestigious pOSlho . th.an being an elected official as it has a nobler goal in the strvIce of mankind. .. * * For:eI11ailr~sponses t? this article, write to vsbobita@mo-pzcom.com or vsbobtta~gmarl.cotn. His columns can be accessed through unmv.philstar. com. I .
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? ~~ April

2012

Page: .._;,,' __

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At Ground level
By SATUR C. OCA~PO

'Maximum'US gains at the least cost via VFA

On April 3D, Foreign Affairs SecreLast April 18-19, invited by the tary Alberto del Rosario and Defense Patriotiko Mindanao alliance, I joined Secretary Voltaire Gazmin will meet in the culminating activities in Washington DC with their US counterZamboanga City of the 2012 Mindanaoparts (State,.S~t~tary Hillary Clinton wide anti-Balikatan protest billed as a~d Defense Secretary Leon Panetta) to "People's Caravan and Lakbayan dISCUSS, nd possibly sign, an agreea against US Militarism and Plunder.". . :r:tent to enhance US military intervenIt was an exhilarating experience for tion and Increase troop deployment in me for two reasons: the Philippines. 1. Aside from the senior activists I . President Aquino is set to visit Washmet at the first People's Caravan in 2002 ington later· to co-sign the agreement - when the first Balikatan joint US-RP with President Barack Obama. military exercises began in the armed- . An enhanced US role in Philippine conflict areas of Basilan and l~ternal affairs - definitely a derogaZamboanga - most of the 2012 partici- han of our national sovereignty and inpants were yo~ng, poI~tica~ly-~een dependence - is part of the US defense people. I h~d bne.f but highly-satisfy- plan to re-assert American dominance IDginteractions wI~h them. . . in the Asia-Pacific to (1) counter China's 2. I~ contrast ':"Ith the anta~omstlc rising economic and military power, reception we got In 2002, the CIty gov-: and (2) "protect the US' economic viernment, unde~ Mayor Cel~o.~obree;at, tality and national interests." The plan granted a permit for.the a~bvlhes, with- calls fO.r aximum use of US treaty and m out ~11:y untoward disruption, The 2,000 executive arrangements with regional participants were accommodated at the allies, including Australia, Singapore city's sports complex. They marched ' peacefully through the city streets, and Japan, South Korea, and the Philippines. held programs at the city center's . Given America's unabashed objective Pershing Plaza. to protect its economic vitality and nan was a big gain for the campaign tional interests, shouldn't the Philipagainst the presence of US troops in pines take a similarly assertix e stand? vlindanao. Since 2002, no major rally Disappointingly, as I wrote in this -uch as this has succeeded in the city. space last Feb. 11, we have been at the The US Joint Special Operations Task losing end of the -65years of supposed ~orcePhilippines, or JSOTFI},is penna- RP-US "special relations." iently installed within the AFP's WestThe Philippines has received eco* * *.rn Mindanao Command headquarters nomic aid in trickles despite our n Zamboanga City.). government's faithful adherence to US E-mail: satur.ocampoesgmoit.com ' (1remember that in 2002, as the cara- 'foreign policy, trade and economic pre'an entered the city, unidentified per- scriptionsthat have even stunted our ons stoned the vehicles, injuring many economic development. And notwithf the participants. And although the standing the 1947 military assistance Irotesters were allowed to use the agreement, no .commensurate military ports complex, they were barred from aid has been given despite Philippine iarching to the city center because the support for US interventionist wars in real authorities had locked the gates.) Korea, Vietnam, iraq and Afghanistan. Othe~ protest ~ctions .were held in Regarding its operations in Mindanao, ie National Capital Region, Southern _the US military brags that it has cost them agalog and Central Luzon. But the so little ~oestablish llieJSOTFP andm~in- com _ Tel no. (02) 892-1693, Local: 5287, 5295 roblem sought to be solved appears .Itain their troops, deployed 011 "rotation . get even worse under the P-Noy gov- "basis," to "advise, train and assist" AFP nrnent, troops in operations against the Abu

Sayyaf (supposedly without engaging in actual combat). . . US Army Gen. Edward Reeder, quoted by US Today, said that it costs only $50 million a year to maintain the "small military contingent of about 600 US service members." When one considers that the US has spent $2i?illion a week in its war in Afghanistan since 2001- yet the war has not been won the "Philippine mission" as a component of the American "war on terror" comes very, very cheap indeed. . Reeder claims success in the antiAbu Sayyaf campaign. Not only that. He boasts that "it is a future model for counterinsurgencies" with this specific module: "swoop into countries and help them extinguish an Islamic insurgency before it gains the strength of a Taliban" that would require an invasion force to defeat. At the Washington bilateral talks on April 30, how many additional troops will the US want to add to its 600-man '<smallcontingent?" What type of operations will they want to undertake outside of the Balikatan joint military exercises ~ which may not permitted under our Constitution?' . The last question is important because one '0£ the 10 "kev military missions" calls for the US troops to conduct "stability and counterinsurgency oper tions alongside coalition forces whenever possible." In fact, under JSOTFP . they may already be doing that. For instance, last April 18 a US"\essel hit a fishing boat off the Basilan coast, killinz fisherman Ahbam Juhurin and injuri~g hIS son. In a statement the US . embassy said the vessel was on a "routine maritime activity" by the JSOTFP and AFP security forces, Both the embassy and the APP said the activity was not part of Balikatan 2012. So what was it about?

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