MANILA – Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana on Wednesday night described as "half-hearted" the Makabayan bloc's condemnation of the New People's Army's (NPA) anti-personnel mine attack that killed a college football player and his cousin in Masbate on June 6.
"Their comrades, the NPA, were caught in flagrante delicto (in the act) kaya no choice sila (they have no choice) but to acknowledge it. But their condemnation is half-hearted," he said in a message to the Philippine News Agency when sought a reaction on the progressive lawmakers' condemnation of the incident.
The NPA is the armed wing of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP).
Also, Lorenzana slammed the Makabayan bloc for being silent over past similar atrocities committed by the NPA.
"There were hundreds of such atrocities committed by the NPA before and the Makabayan Bloc’s silence (was) deafening. Worst (of all), they impute them to the AFP-PNP (Armed Forces of the Philippines-Philippine National Police)," he added.
The Makabayan bloc earlier said it condemns the military action by a "unit of the NPA in Masbate City" that caused the death of Far Eastern University football star Kieth Absalon and his cousin Nolven. Absalon's nephew, Chrisbin Daniel, was injured in the incident.
Meanwhile, Philippine National Police chief Gen. Guillermo Eleazar also scored the communist terrorist group for claiming remorse over the deaths of the Absalon cousins.
He also challenged the communist terrorists to cease their attacks and atrocities, instead, to show that they truly regret the deaths of innocent people they were responsible for.
Eleazar also echoed Interior Secretary Eduardo Año's challenge for the CPP-NPA to surrender the perpetrators of the incident to show that they are sincere in apologizing over the incident.
The PNP chief added that the bereaved family of the victims is crying for justice which can only be attained if the perpetrators would face the consequences of their actions and be put behind bars.
The use of APMs is a violation of the International Humanitarian Law and the 1997 Anti-Personnel Mine Ban Convention adopted by the international community, prohibiting the acquisition, production, stockpiling, and use of weapons.
The CPP-NPA is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines. (with Lloyd Caliwan/PNA)