AFP to monitor social media to prevent recruitment of young suicide bombers

Aileen Cerrudo   •   September 4, 2020   •   559

The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) is eyeing to monitor social media, evacuation centers, schools, and orphanages to help prevent terrorists to recruit the youth and train them as suicide bombers.

In an interview on ‘Get it Straight with Daniel Razon’, AFP Spokesperson MGen. Edgard Arevalo said there is a risk that the youth would be easier to be persuaded by the radicalized ideas of terrorist groups.

Nakikipagtulungan tayo sa mga local government officials upang ito ay maagapan natin na hindi makapasok na maaring mag-recruit at lumason sa kanilang isipan (We are coordinating with local government officials to prevent terrorists from recruiting and poisoning the youth’s minds),” he said.

The AFP also advised parents to also monitor their children and be aware of their activities.

Meanwhile, Arevalo expressed his gratitude to several LGUs in Sulu that declared the Abu Sayyaf Group as persona non grata.

From 1991 to June 2020, around 100 suicide bombing incidents were recorded in Sulu. AAC (with reports from Lea Ylagan)

AFP official says not fair to red tag Liza Soberano but warns vs. ties with Gabriela

Robie de Guzman   •   October 22, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – A military official has warned actress Liza Soberano against associating with Gabriela Women’s Party for its alleged links to the New People’s Army (NPA).

In a statement Wednesday night, Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Southern Luzon Command (SolCom) chief Lieutenant General Antonio Parlade Jr. said it is not fair to red-tag Soberano as “she is merely supporting advocacy for women’s rights.”

Parlade said Soberano should be protected in the exercise of her rights and that she is “not yet” a member of the NPA.

However, Parlade pointed out that she and other celebrities should be educated on the “hidden violent agenda” of the Malayang Kilusan ng Bagong Kababaihan (MAKIBAKA).

MAKIBAKA is an underground mass organization hiding under Gabriela Women’s Party, according to the military official.

“Let us not red-tag Liza Soberano. It’s not fair to her. She is merely supporting advocacy for women’s rights. She has to be protected in the exercise of her rights,” he said in a statement posted on the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (ELCAC) Facebook account.

“Is she an NPA? No, of course not. Not yet. So let’s help educate her and the other celebrity targets of Malayang Kilusan ng Bagong Kababaihan (MAKIBAKA), the Underground Mass Organization hiding under Gabriela Women’s Party,” he added.

Parlade also advised the actress to stop supporting Gabriela.

“Liza Soberano, there’ s still a chance to abdicate that group. If you don’t, you will suffer the same fate as Josephine Anne Lapira @ELLA, former Deputy Secretary General of Gabriela Youth of UP, Manila and defender of women’s rights, even against sexual predators amongst her comrades in the NPA unit she joined which is clearly stated in her handwritten letter addressed to a certain @EMIL,” he said.

The AFP official also issued the same warning to Miss Universe 2018 Catriona Gray and told them not the follow the path of a certain Ka Ella Colmenares.

“The choice is yours Liza. And so with you Catriona,” he said.

“I am sure Angel Locsin and Neri Colmenares will not tell you this,” he added.

In the same statement, Parlade also slammed the Gabriella party for not informing their recruits about their group’s agenda.

“So, Rep. Arlene Brosas and Gabriela, shame on you if you haven’t informed your recruits about your hidden violent agenda,” he said.

In response to the statement, Gabriela party-list Rep. Brosas criticized Parlade for red tagging and “mansplaining” Soberana.

“Lieutenant General Antonio Parlade’s appeal to stop red-tagging Liza Soberano is starkly ironic because he actually red tagged Soberano in his statement. By saying that Soberano is ‘not yet an NPA,’ he is maliciously associating the actress with the armed movement when what she did in the youth forum was to only speak up for all the victims of gender-based violence and abused,” she said in a statement.

“It is clear that Parlade, the NTF-ELCAC and the paid trolls are the ones who are rabidly red-tagging Liza Soberano and other female celebrities and influencers who are taking a stand and speaking out against the macho-facism under the Duterte regime. How come these macho-fascists have the audacity to mansplain strong women and lecture them on what to do? And why do they seem so afraid of women using their platform to defend other women?” she added.

The issue came after Soberano joined a Gabriela Youth online forum to discuss issues being faced by girls and women amid the pandemic.

“These rabid NTF-ELCAC executives are using their rehashed script to discredit Gabriela Women’s Party despite our long track record of advocating women’s rights. Our 20 years of advancing women and children’s rights inside and outside of Congress cannot be smeared by their repeated lies,” Brosas said.

11 Abu Sayyaf members surrender in Sulu

Aileen Cerrudo   •   October 19, 2020

Eleven members of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) surrendered to the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) in Sulu on Saturday (October 17).

The 1101st Infantry Brigade of the AFP identified the surrenderers in their aliases as: Alji, Gaspar, Amz, Ardin, Bebs, Madz, Uyong, Bahad, Navin, Allon, and Asir.

According to Western Mindanao Command Spokesperson Lt. Colonel Alaric delos Santos, the holistic approach of the Joint Task Force in Sulu paved the way for the former ASG members’ surrender.

The 11 members also surrendered five M16 rifle and one M1 grenade launcher. After surrendering, they will undergo rehabilitation program for them to be able to receive the benefits from the government under the Localized Social Integration Program.

Last October, over 100 ex-ASG members in Sulu were given P15,000 cash assistance. AAC (with reports from Val Villaflor)

Facebook offered to reconstruct taken down ‘Hands off our children’ page – AFP

Robie de Guzman   •   October 14, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – Social media giant Facebook has offered to “reconstruct” an account it recently took down due to alleged links to the military and coordinated inauthentic behavior.

In a statement on Tuesday, Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) chief of staff General Gilbert Gapay said Facebook made the offer to reconstruct the “Hands Off Our Children” page but admitted that it cannot restore the original page.

The “Hands Off Our Children” page is a group composed of parents whose children were recruited into the New People’s Army (NPA).

The page was among the more than 100 pages that Facebook removed in October as it stepped up its campaign against fake accounts and pages that are spreading false information.

Facebook earlier said these accounts were traced to have links with China, the Philippine National Police and the military.

Gapay has expressed dismay over Facebook’s action and called it “unfair.”

“They are unfair to us in taking down those sites because there are many other sites that are really espousing hate, violence, terrorism that should have been taken down in the first place, not these good sites which [we] are advocating on Facebook,” he said.

Gapay said the official Facebook pages of the AFP and all its units remain active for updates on military efforts and activities.

He also stressed that the Philippine military does not engage in sharing fake news and disinformation on social media.

The AFP already met with Facebook representatives to thresh out issues on their social media pages. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Lea Ylagan)

REACH US

The Philippine Broadcast Hub

UNTV, 915 Barangay Philam,

EDSA, Quezon City M.M. 1104

(+632) 8396-8688 (Tel)

info@untv-newsandrescue.com (General inquiries)

ABOUT UNTV

UNTV is a major TV broadcast network with 24-hour programming. An Ultra High Frequency station with strong brand content that appeal to everyone, UNTV is one of the most trusted and successful Philippine networks that guarantees wholesome and quality viewing experience.