Skip to main content

AFP findings on Basilan attack out this week

MANILA, Philippines - The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) may issue this week the results of an investigation, which was conducted to determine the circumstances that led to the killing of 19 soldiers in Al-Barka, Basilan.

Col. Arnulfo Burgos, spokesman of the AFP, said that according to Maj. Gen. Ireneo Espino he may be able to finish the initial result of the investigation by the end of the week.

Burgos made the statement during an interview with ABS-CBN News as he denied a news report, which quotes a supposed initial findings of the military on its investigation into the soldiers' killing that the military operation in Sitio Bakisung, Barangay Cugman last October 18, was not authorized.

He added that based on initial reports, the Philippine Army's 4th Special Forces Battalion (SFB) that conducted the operation was authorized by Special Operations Task Force Basilan commander Col. Alexander Macario.

Macario and two other military officials, including the Army spokesman Antonio Parlade and 4th SFB commander Lt. Col. Leo Peña have been relieved from their posts pending the results of the inspector general's investigation.

"It is part of [Macario's] responsibility being the commander of the task force Basilan. It can authorize the conduct of operations within the island," Burgos said, adding that the rules on the authorization of operations by the military is included in the inquiry being conducted Espino.

Meanwhile, Burgos said that the military will not release a full report on the October 18 encounter.

"Not the full details... that is for internal consumption. We will be giving some of the results of the investigation," he said.

Military spokesman, including Parlade and Western Mindanao Command's Lt. Col. Randolph Cabangbang, had said that the members of the SFB were pursuing a group of armed men led by Dan Laksam Asnawi, reportedly a deputy commander of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front's 114th Base Command, when they were ambushed by an undetermined number of armed men in Sitio Bakisung.

The military initially announced that the troops were pursuing bandits and suspected member of the Abu Sayyaf Group. It had also said that during the encounter, the bandits were reinforced by their relatives, who happened to be members of the MILF.

The MILF leadership, however, claimed that all of the armed men encountered by the troops in the area are the separatist group's "mujahideen."

The MILF said that their fighters fired at the troops because they were already inside their group's area of temporary stay (ATS), an agreed designated area where the rebels can stay during military operations to avoid a misencounter.

The military, however, claimed that the troops' position was at least four kilometers away from the MILF group's ATS.

No coup

Meanwhile, Burgos also denied a news report, quoting Deputy Presidential Spokesperson Abigail Valte, that there is a confirmed destabilization plot against President Benigno Aquino III because of his stand against proposals to suspend the ceasefire agreement with the MILF.

"In as far as the AFP is concerned, we have not received reports from the commanders within the chain of command that such there is such a thing," the military spokesman said.

"We have not seen an official report of the destabilization plot," repeated Burgos.

He also denied reports that troops are demoralized because of the encounter in Basilan and the series of attacks by the MILF in Zamboanga Sibugay.

Valte, in a separate interview with ABS-CBN News, also denied that she has confirmed the alleged destabilization plot against the administration.

------------------------------

The Philippine Star Updated October 25, 2011 04:15 PM

Comments

More Philippine Defense News

AFP Modernization 2017: Highlights and Review

The modernization of the Armed Forces of the Philippines was on a roll this year, as we've seen a few big ticket items having completely delivered this year. Game changers as they say, these new assets have proven their capabilities both in combat and humanitarian missions.

Here's a brief on everything what we know about the AFP modernization this 2017.

Philippine Air Force  FA-50PH


The final batch of the FA-50PH Lead-In Fighter Trainers have been successfully delivered by the Korean Aerospace Industries last May. The last batch of 2 arrived on May 31st at Clark Air Base. The contract consist of 12 FA-50's at the price of Php 18.9 billion. AFP spokesperson Brig. Gen. Restituto Padilla mentioned on a March 23 article in Inquirer that there are plans to purchase 6 more additional FA-50's if the funding allows it and if the performance is good.

FA-50PH Weapons - AIM-9 Air-to-air Missiles
Aside from the aircraft itself the Department of National Defense also ordered AIM-9

DND wants frigate with 'surface-to-air' missile power

MANILA, Philippines - Defense spokesperson Peter Paul Galvez announced on Friday that one of the frigates to be acquired by the Philippines will have "surface-to-air" capabilities. That is, the ship will have the capability to fire missiles, guided by radar or heat sensors, at airborne targets.
"Aside from this, our latest frigate will have heavier gun armament and other equipment that will make it very effective in patrolling and securing the country's waters," Galvez said in Filipino.
He declined to state the particular country the Philippines will acquire this ship but stressed that acquisition will be done through a government-to-government transaction.
The Philippines has taken on a new sense of urgency to upgrade its naval capabilities as tensions continue to rise around the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea). US President Barack Obama's announced "pivot" for America towards the Pacific has stirred greater naval activity on the p…

Special Forces Assault Boat and the Philippine Aerospace Development Corporation

Special Forces assault boats to beef up patrols in Davao Gulf
Special Forces assault boats will soon patrol Davao Gulf to detect and deter piracy and terrorist threats in southern waters.

Two of these boats were formally turned over by Special Forces Regiment commander Brig. Gen. Ramiro Manuel Rey to Eastern Mindanao Command chief Lt. Gen. Benjamin Madrigal in Davao City on Tuesday, the EastMinCom said in a statement.

Madrigal said the boats will be “an additional capability in securing the municipal waters in the area of responsibility, particularly Davao Gulf, to preempt terrorists, piracy and other security threats from using the sea lanes in their terrorist and criminal acts. It can also be used for water search and rescue operations.”

The boats have counter/anti-terrorist capability and will be manned by Special Forces Riverine troopers.

The boats will be initially deployed with Joint Task Force Haribon which has the jurisdiction of Mega Davao, the Eastern Mindanao Command said.

Ori…