Soldiers aid injured NPA member in Quezon Province

Aileen Cerrudo   •   February 11, 2021   •   1039

A member of the New People’s Army (NPA) was rescued by soldiers who were conducting clearing operations in Catanauan, Quezon Province.

Captain Jayrald Ternio, head of the public affairs office of the Army’s 2nd Infantry Division said the soldiers patrolling in Barangay San Roque, Agro heard a cry for help. The soldiers were conducting clearing operations after a recent encounter against NPA rebels.

Ternio said the soldiers found a wounded 24-year-old alias Marlon who was reportedly left behind by his companions.

Ganoon pala kapag wala nang halaga. Iiwanan na lang nila. Nangako silang babalikan ako, ilang araw na, hindi naman sila bumalik (That’s how it is for them once you lose value. They will leave you. They promised to return but it has been days),” according to alias Marlon.

Ternio also acknowledged the soldier’s efforts in aiding those in need regardless of which side they are fighting for.

Kahit sa gitna ng labanan ipinakita ng ating mga kasundaluhan ang propesyonalismo at pagrespeto sa karapatang pantao (Amid the battle our soldiers showed professionalism and respect for human rights),” he said. -AAC (with reports from Jennica Cruz)

PH gov’t warns public vs providing financial, material support to CPP-NPA-NDF

Robie de Guzman   •   December 3, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The government has warned the public against providing money and material support to the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF).

In a statement, the Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC) said the CPP-NPA and NDF have been designated as a terrorist organization by the Anti-Terrorism Council (ATC) through its Resolution Nos. 12 and 21.

The AMLC warned that under Section 12 of the Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020, any person who provides material support to a terrorist individual or organization, knowing that such individual or organization is committing or planning to commit terrorist acts, is liable as principal and in relation to Sections 4 and 6 of the ATA, shall suffer the penalty of life imprisonment.

It also cited Section 8 of Republic Act 10168 or the Terrorism Financing Prevention and Suppression Act (TFPSA), which provides that any person who makes available any property or funds or financial services or other related services to designated persons or organizations shall suffer the penalty of reclusion temporal to reclusion perpetua and a fine of not less than P500,000 nor more than P1 million.

“Further, Section 11 of the TFPSA authorizes the Anti-Money Laundering Council, upon its own initiative or at the request of the ATC, to freeze property or funds that are related to terrorism financing,” the agency said.

“In effect, the ATC designation makes any person who provides monetary and material support to the CPP-NPA-NDF liable for violations of relevant provisions of the ATA or TFPSA,” it added.

Over the years, the Communist Terrorist Group has engaged in terrorism financing.

According to a former ranking NPA member, fees collected from political candidates are pro-rated based on the sought position.

The AMLC said that recovered CPP-NPA documents, statements of former NPA members, and other reliable sources reveal that communist terrorists raise and collect funds through extortion/taxation, including election fees, such as “permits to campaign/win” from politicians.

Other regular and major sources of funds are mining companies, telephone companies, construction firms, and other businesses, including project funds from abroad. These funds amount to billions of pesos, where 60% goes to the CPP Central Committee and 40% remains with the regional units for their terrorist operations.

Apart from money, communist terrorists also receive firearms, combat boots, uniforms, and technical equipment/gadgets.

Prior to the ATC designation, the CPP-NPA has been designated as terrorist organizations by other countries and jurisdictions, including the United States, European Union, Australia, United Kingdom, and New Zealand.

“Putting an end to the local communist movement entails cutting off their sources of funding and other means of support,” AMLC said.

“Thus, the public must immediately report any coercive or illegal fund collection by the communist terrorists as these terrorism financing activities sustain the violent agenda of the CPP-NPA-NDF that disregards not only our country’s laws but also human life, public safety, and right over property,” it added.

Duterte names Army chief Centino as next AFP chief

Robie de Guzman   •   November 12, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte has designated Philippine Army chief Lieutenant General Andres Centino as the new chief of staff of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), Malacañang said Friday.

“We confirm that President Rodrigo Roa Duterte approved and signed the designation of LGEN Andres Centino as Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) effective November 12, 2021,” Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said in a statement.

Centino will replace General Jose Faustino Jr. who is retiring from service as he reaches the mandatory age of 56.

“We are confident that Gen. Centino will continue the initiatives of his predecessors to bring lasting peace and development in the country while securing the State and upgrading our defense capability,” Roque said.

“We wish the success of Gen. Centino in his new role as AFP Chief,” he added.

Centino is a member of the Philippine Military Academy Maringal Class of 1988.

Meanwhile, the AFP said Centino’s designation “will prompt an upward movement in the AFP leadership that will further inspire our soldiers to surpass challenges with excellence and continue our campaign towards genuine transformation.”

“He has immense knowledge and experience in leading our troops on the ground and in supporting peaceful efforts to protect our people against various threats,” AFP spokesperson Colonel Ramon Zagala said in a separate statement.

“His integrity, management acumen and genuine desire for peace and development make him a competent leader who shall guide the AFP in fulfilling its mission while supporting national efforts to battle the current pandemic,” he added.

Prior to his appointment, Centino served as AFP deputy chief of staff for operations and infantry division commander in Northern Mindanao.

Military Black Hawk choppers deployed to aid missions in Western Mindanao

Robie de Guzman   •   November 5, 2021

Two Black Hawk helicopters acquired by the Philippine military have been deployed to the Western Mindanao, the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) said Friday.

In a statement, the AFP Western Mindanao Command (WestMinCom) said its major Air Force Unit, Tactical Operations Wing-Western Mindanao (TOW-WM), has received the S70i Black Hawk Utility helicopters on November 4 at the Edwin Andrews Air Base.

These units will be used to aid in various missions, including support in combat operations and quick response for humanitarian aid, it added.

“We are very grateful that the top brass considered the deployment of these air assets which will greatly contribute to the accomplishment of our missions here in Western Mindanao,” said WestMinCom Commander, Maj. Gen. Alfredo Rosario, Jr.

Colonel Dennis Estrella, wing commander of the TOW-WM, said that the deployment of the Blackhawk helicopters will boost the capability of the armed forces in both lethal and non-lethal operations.

“Expect that with the deployment of the Black Hawk helicopters in our unit, our operations will greatly improve as these helicopters have larger capacity and more impressive horsepower allowing a faster and longer-range transport. In addition, the said helicopters have the ability to absorb high-impact velocities enabling it to withstand strong turbulent winds,” Estrella said.

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