BY GILBERT P. BAYORAN
Army soldiers stationed in Negros Island have reaffirmed their commitment towards the promotion of the International Humanitarian Law, during the holding of simultaneous flag-raising ceremonies Monday.
The Department of National Defense is hosting this year’s national celebration of the IHL Month, on the theme “Upholding the Law of Armed Conflict Amidst the Covid-19 Pandemic: Protecting Humanity for Healing and Recovery”.
Brig. Gen. Inocencio Pasaporte, 303rd Infantry Brigade commander, said they are strongly condemning all forms of abuses and violations of the IHL.
Pasaporte said he is seriously concerned about the non-adherence by the New People’s Army and allied groups to the IHL, including the indiscriminate attacks on civilians, starving civilians as a method of warfare, unlawful denial of access to humanitarian assistance and humanitarian personnel, and attacks against medical personnel and medical facilities, especially the recent ones related to the Covid-19 pandemic.
He called on all parties to comply with their legal obligations.
Similar activities were also held at the 302nd Infantry Brigade headquarters in Tanay City, Negros Oriental, and at Camp Macario Peralta in Jamindan, Capiz, home of the 3rd Infantry Division, aside from the 303IB headquarters in Murcia, Negros Occidental.
Maj. Gen. Eric Vinoya, 3ID commander, said in a statement, that all Spearhead troopers should consistently perform their mandated duty with utmost respect for human rights.
“We are the people’s soldiers. Protecting them, especially innocent civilians and non-combatants, is part of our sworn duty. We must strictly abide by the provisions of the IHL in the discharge of our duties and functions to ensure their safety at all times,” Vinoya said.*