Torture Victims are not Liars, P-noy, Punish other Torturers—Karapatan

Karapatan chairperson Marie Hilao-Enriquez challenged P-Noy “to punish other members of the AFP and the PNP who are likewise involved with the torture of those suspected as rebels, “terrorist’’ and their so-called supporters or sympathizers.‘’ According to Hilao-Enriquez “the image of the tortured Abdul Kan Ajid, suspected member of the bandit group ASG, calls to mind the 29 other persons who suffered torture under the one year old P-Noy government.” 

It’s the height of cruelty how Malacanang, through Secretary  Ricky Carandang,  dismissed the torture of Abdul Kan Ajid as ‘allegations’ and deny that it is the government’s policy to torture ‘suspected criminals’, added Hilao-Enriquez. Carandang earlier said in a statement that Malacanang will have to "see the allegations if there are basis, it's easy to make accusations." 

The first torture case documented by Karapatan under the P-Noy administration happened on July 3, 2010, three days after P-Noy’s inauguration. Alex Ortile, 34 year-old peasant from Albay, was slapped and beaten using the butt of an armalite to force him to admit that he is a supporter of the NPA. Because of the beating, Ortile vomited blood. The military, a certain Lt. Palacio, even ordered him to lick the blood. Lt. Palacio also threatened to punch his face with a broken glass. 

On May 8, 2011,  Malik Daggung Abdurahman was just strolling in a mall in Manila when PNP Intelligence operatives illegally arrested him. He was forced to admit that he is ‘Kirih Hamid Sahirun,’ an alleged member of the MILF accused of involvement in the 2007 ambush of Philippine Marines.  Abdurahman was blindfolded and tortured with water cure.  
Abdul Kan Ajid and the 29 others documented by Karapatan point to the AFP and the PNP as torturers.  All victims were tortured because they were suspected as “terrorists” or rebels, and all in the name of ‘’anti-terrorism” or “national security.”

“What makes it worst is the barefaced denial that this government uses torture against those whom they arrested and detained, making it appear that the victims and witnesses are liars,” claims Hilao-Enriquez. 
“Let it be known that the use of torture did not end with the martial law regime of Marcos. It did not end with GMA. It is still in practice even under the P-Noy administration,” said Hilao-Enriquez.  Karapatan claims that there is no essential difference between the present administration and the Arroyo regime, between Oplan Bantay Laya and the current Oplan Bayanihan. “No one can deny that human rights violations, including torture, continue up to the present,” added HIlao-Enriquez. 

“It has already been a year but the P-Noy government has yet to correct the injustices committed against the vicitms by going after the perpetrators –GMA and her generals, and those who are liable under his own rule,” concludes Hilao-Enriquez. 

The Philippine government is a signatory to the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment. GPH ratified the said convention in June 1986.  Republic Act 9745 or the Anti-Torture Act of 2009 was likewise signed into a law on November 10, 2009. ###


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