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AFP to rights group: Name Palparan’s coddlers

MANILA, Philippines—The military on Wednesday dared a human rights group to identify the supposed coddlers of retired Major General Jovito Palparan, who is in hiding after a warrant was issued for his arrest in connection with the case of two missing University of the Philippines students.
“Provide us the names (of coddlers) and we will initiate actions. The Armed Forces is willing to cooperate in any investigating authority in quest for truth and justice. We will provide assistance,” military spokesman Colonel Arnulfo Marcelo Burgos Jr. said in a press briefing.
The Human Rights Watch had claimed that it had received reports from civilian officials that “they believe some military personnel and business owners, who benefited from Palparan’s campaign against the communist New People’s Army, are protecting the retired general.”
Burgos reiterated that they “will not tolerate any member of Armed Forces providing sanctuary to personnel wanted.”
Referred as as “berdugo” (butcher) by activists for a string of extrajudicial killings and forced disappearances in places in Central Luzon and Eastern Visayas where he had been assigned, Palparan, along with three others, was accused of kidnapping UP activists Sherlyn Cadapan and Karen Empeño in Hagonoy, Bulacan in 2006. He was the army division commander at the time.
He went into hiding shortly before warrants were issued for his arrest and of his three co-accused on December  21. A P1-million reward has been offered by the government for information that will lead to his arrest.
5:34 pm | Wednesday, February 1st, 2012


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