Justice will catch up with CPP-NPA: Palace
By Azer Parrocha / Philippine News Agency
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque (File photo)
MANILA – Malacañang on Thursday expressed confidence that justice will catch up with Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF) no matter how long it takes.
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque made this statement after the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) vowed to investigate the 1,506 atrocities and International Humanitarian Law (IHL) violations committed by the CPP-NPA-NDF from 2010 to 2020.
“Ang liability po nila ay dahil sa paglabag sa International Humanitarian Law (Their liability lies on their International Humanitarian Law violations),” Roque said in a Palace press briefing.
Citing how the Nazi war criminals are still being prosecuted for the crimes they committed throughout World War II, he said the same would happen to the CPP-NPA-NDF.
“I’m sure po na gaya ng mga Nazis na maraming nagtago, yung iba uugod-ugod na e nahuli pa rin sila and 50 years later pinanagot pa rin sila. Kampante po ako na hindi po makakawala sa kanilang mga krimen ang mga CPP-NPA (I’m sure that just like the Nazis where many of them hid, even the elderly ones were arrested and 50 years later they were held accountable. I am confident that the CPP-NPA will not be able to escape their crimes). Justice will catch up with them,” he added.
President Rodrigo Duterte has repeatedly criticized communist rebels for committing offenses like arson, rape and killing soldiers and barangay officials, and for conspiring to overthrow the government.
Instead of waging war, Duterte urged communist rebels to “choose a better fight in life,” assuring that the government will provide them with livelihood assistance if they lay down their arms.
On May 20, Brig. Gen. Jose Alejandro S. Nacnac, Director of the Armed Forces of the Philippines Center for the Law on Armed Conflict (AFPCLOAC) submitted to CHR Commissioner Karen Dumpit a list of hundreds of willful killings perpetrated by the CPP-NPA-NDF for the last 10 years.
The report lists 532 incidents of destruction of civilian-owned properties, the killing of 77 soldiers and 296 civilians, and the recruitment of 464 child warriors.
Undersecretary Severo Catura, National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) spokesperson on human rights, peace process, and international engagements, said the CPP-NPA-NDF may be compelled to indemnify victims of their human rights abuses and atrocities in billions of dollars.
Catura, Executive Director of the Presidential Human Rights Committee Secretariat (PHRCS), said under existing local and international laws, particularly the IHL, parties that are found guilty of such abuses and atrocities committed in a situation of internal armed conflict may be compelled by the courts to indemnify their victims.
The CPP-NPA is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines. (PNA)