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Continuation of Oplan Bantay Laya II: another life claimed

September 2, 2010

Last August 25, 2010 at around 7:00 in the evening, Casiano Abing, a court employee and a member of the progressive partylist Bayan Muna was shot inside his house at Poblacion, Balangiga, Eastern Samar by a lone gunman. He was brought to a hospital but was declared dead-on-arrival. The victim sustained five (5) gunshot wounds leading to his death. Casiano Abing was a responsible father and a good man with no personal enemies.

The Regional Alliance for the Advancement of People’s Rights, KATUNGOD-SB-KARAPATAN, condemns in the highest possible terms the killing of Casiano Abing. Said killing is the first recorded case of extra-judicial killing in the Region and the 1st under the Aquino Administration. Said killing only shows that with the extension of the counter-insurgency program Oplan Bantay Laya II, the state policy of political killings would continue and indeed continuing. More so that it was declared that the target of this extension is Negros and Samar.

For the record, it is the Aquino Administration that openly declared and admitted the existence of Oplan Bantay Laya II. Said open admission only shows that our long contention that there is a state policy of systematic crackdown on the progressive organizations really existed. These progressive organizations, including our Regional Alliance, are being tagged by the military and other state agents as the “sectoral front” of the New People’s Army thereby making its/our members and leaders the target of their “neutralization” actions: arresting, detaining, and killing.

With this first case of extra-judicial killing in the Region, we are calling on all peace-loving people of Eastern Visayas to condemn this brutal killing and to be one with us in our quest for justice for Casiano Abing and for the 120 victims of extra-judicial killings. These cases must not dishearten us but rather must serve as a challenge to us to continue our struggle for our human rights and to stand side-by-side our oppressed brothers and sisters in the Region who are also fighting for their rights.