Fear for life of farmer illegally arrested by state security forces

Account of the Incident:

In the morning of March 20, 2009, a unit of the 79th Infantry Battalion-Philippine Army went to Noli’s residence and, amidst his protestations, took him with them.

Fearful for his safety, his parents insisted in accompanying him.

The soldiers brought the farmers to the 79th IB headquarters in Brgy.4, Poblacion, Siaton, Negros Oriental.

Noli was forced to sign an affidavit disclaiming military accountability in the abduction, disappearance and the summary execution of his father-in-law, Julito Quirante early this year.  

He was released after signing the document.

Worried that the soldiers will return, Noli has avoided staying home.

Noli has all the reason to be fearful. In the first two months of this year, four activist farmers in his hometown of Sta.Catalina have been executed. Among the victims was his father-in-law Julito Quirante whose body and that of peasant Ronel Raguing were exhumed by KARAPATAN in a Fact-Finding Mission on March 9, 2009 in Sitio Junob, Sta.Catalina, Negros Oriental.  

With Noli’s illegal arrest by the 79th IB, it is clear the government is dead-set in covering up its tracks, whitewashing the case and in engendering a climate of impunity. ###