Senior military officials must be put to task for Burgos abduction

By CPP Information Bureau

The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) today welcomed recent information revealing that a junior military official directly carried out the abduction of peasant activist Jonas Burgos last 2007 in a mall in Quezon City. Last week, the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) revealed in a report to the Suprme Court that 1st Lt. Harry Baliaga Jr. of the Philippine Army's 56th Infantry Battalion based in Bulacan is the "principal by direct participation in the abduction of Burgos."

"For so many years, the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) has been covering up its responsibility in the abduction and enforced disappearance of Burgos," said the CPP. "It has repeatedly accused the New People's Army (NPA) of carrying out the abduction when all the while they have been protecting and promoting the perpetrators of this crime."

"The abduction of Jonas Burgos by the fascist criminals of the AFP was carried out in line with the terrorist policy of Oplan Bantay Laya (OBL)," said the CPP.

"Senior officials of the AFP and defense and security officials of the Arroyo regime are directly and indirectly responsible for the abduction of scores of activists and the killing of more than a thousand peasants, workers, students, teachers, government employees, and other ordinary people who stood up against the antipeople puppet regime."

"With the identification of the Army officer directly responsible for the Burgos disappearance, the Filipino people demand a quick resolution and closure of the case," asserted the CPP.

"1st Lieutenant Baliaga must be held accountable and punished for the criminal abduction of Jonas Burgos," said the CPP.

"However, Baliaga will simply become a scapegoat if other officers responsible behind the Burgos disappearance are not put to task and punished for their criminal culpabilities," added the CPP. "The case of the Burgos disappearance must serve as an impetus to resolve the countless other fascist crimes perpetrated by the AFP under OBL. Without a comprehensive repudiation of the criminal and fascist framework set forth by the OBL, wide-ranging justice cannot be achieved."

"These criminal acts continue to be perpetrated by the AFP under (the new national security plan) Oplan Bayanihan," said the CPP. "The constant declarations of the AFP of 'respecting human rights' and 'winning the peace' fail to cover up the continuing fascist crimes of the AFP."