20 September 2010
Datu Salibo, Maguindanao

Pagatin, Datu Salibo, MAGUINDANAO- Group of armed men believed to be members of 105th base command of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) allegedly harassed the detachment of 29th Infantry Battalion in Sitio Gadong here on Sunday, September 19 at around 7:00 in the evening.

The fire fight lasted almost 15 minutes based on the testimonies of the people near the sitio who witnessed the incident. No casualties were reported on both sides but the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in the sitio who have gone home on May 19, 2010 fled anew to nearby barangays.

Prior to the incident, people near the detachment were vacating their homes during night time and returning during daytime because of rumours of possible attacks of the MILF rebels as retaliation on the arrest of Hadi Abdul on September 13, 2010. Abdul was arrested by members of 29th IB during their operation in Sitio Gadong and Barangay Madia against the private armies involved in the gruesome November 23 Massacre.

In Luwaran, the official MILF website, the arrest of Hadi Abdul was condemned by the group. A member of the MILF Central Committee had cautioned the military for undertaking illegal arrests, saying that this could affect the ceasefire and the effort to resume the peace talks between the GRP and the MILF.

Based on the statement of Khaled Musa, deputy chairman of the Front’s Committee on Information of the MILF Central Committee, Hadi is a member of MILF under 105th base command and member of the of the Joint Ceasefire Monitoring Post (JCMP), a ceasefire mechanisms on the ground under the Joint Coordinating Committee on the Cessation of Hostilities (JCCCH) in Datu Saudi Ampatuan, Datu Piang and the so-called Salvo-Pagatin-Mamamsapano-Shariff Aguak (SPMS) areas for years sometime in 2006 to 2008.

On 19 May 2010, the DSWD-ARMM and the Office of the Regional Governor (ORG-ARMM) facilitated the returned of the 360 IDP families in Sitio Gadong, Barangay Pagatin after this area was declared “safe” by the AFP. Prior to this return there were already disapprovals from the group of the IDPs complaining on the presence of the 29th IB detachment in the Sitio. These IDPs were worried on their security and safety in the Sitio as the presence of the detachment and soldiers in the area is susceptible to attack.#

LGU, Army validate number of displaced families in Datu Piang

09 August 2010

Datu Piang, MAGUINDANAO- The Local Government Unit of Datu Piang conducted validation and assessment on displaced families due to fighting between the two commanders of Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF). This effort was done to determine the exact number of displaced persons temporarily sheltering at Gumbay Elementary School and those who sought refuge to their relatives here.

August 6, 2010, these IDPs have moved to Datu Piang Poblacion at around 2:00 in the afternoon brought about the brewing conflict between local MILF commanders Abunawas of 104th base command and commander Adzmi of 106th base command. On the following day at around 11:30 am the fire fight between the groups flared-up.

As to the result of validation, the LGU is planning to share it with different concerned agencies especially to the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) for appropriate assistance once the collation of data is finished and the immediate needs of the displaced families are identified.

The 29th Infantry battalion set up a booth inside Datu Gumbay Elementary School evacuation center to validate the number of the displaced families and monitor their movements while at the displacement site. As of august 08, 2010, they have listed 89 IDP families from barangay Alonganen, 63 families from barangay Balanaken and 194 families from barangay Liong.

According to MTB’s source who requested anonymity, the elements of the 29th IB are continuously validating the number of IDPs arriving and those IDPs in the house-based setting. They have started their monitoring and listing since last Saturday and opened their booth from 8:00 in the morning until 5:00 in the afternoon and during night times from 7:30 to 11:00 they are having a film showing in the nearby stage inside the campus to entertain the IDPs.

To date, based on our interview with some of the IDPs they still are hearing exchanges of fires in the area but a little bit minimal compared to last Friday. There is also unverified report of two combatants killed in action (KIA) that belongs to commander Abunawas forces.

They also said that there are 29th IB troops based in sitio Kinudal, Balanaken adjacent to barangay Liong and barangay Alonganen observing the situation. # (EGM)

100 families fled anew due to rido in Datu Piang, Maguindanao

06 August 2010

Datu Piang, Maguindanao – Displacement anew due to fear of being caught between the two warring MILF Commanders here.

At 2:00 o’clock in the afternoon, around 100 families from Barangay Liong fled their homes due to the alleged presence of Commander Abunawas and his men in the area.
Accordingly, the residents moved out from their residence due to fear of a possible encounter between Commander Abunawas and Commander Adzmi who has a long-standing Rido in the area due to land conflict.

This current tension brought by these two rivals is a repeat of what happened last July 12, 2010 displacing more than 100 families from the Barangays of Liong and Balanaken.

Allegedly, displaced residents are currently taking a temporary refuge at the Datu Gumbay Piang Elementary School and Fish Landing Evacuation Center in Barangay Buayan, while, some have fled to nearby Barangays in the town.
Days ago, civilians started moving out from the barangays of Balanaken and Liong to find a safer place to stay-on because of the tension felt due to the presence of the armed men.

The displaced families were temporarily sheltering in Datu Gumbay Elementary School and Gani L. Abpi College Inc. (GLACI3). And there are also some families who decided to stay with their relatives in the Poblacion and nearby area.

Presently, all of the civilians residing in Balanakan and Liong vacated the vicinity of the two opposing groups.# (SJT)

Some residents in Aleosan, North Cotabato fled anew

22 July 2010
Aleosan, North Cotabato

Dunguan, ALEOSAN, NORTH COTABATO- Residents of Sitio Risingan in this village fled anew due to series of fire fights between groups of local MILF Commander Hadji Sajid a.k.a kumander Bravo under 105th base command and Municipal Councilor Norodin Ungkay of Aleosan started on July 19 until last night.

Around 80 families fled their homes and farmlands on July 19 when commander Bravo attacked the CAFGU detachment located at the junction in Sitio Manggahan, Barangay Dunguan. These families sought refuge to nearby villages in Sitio San Mateo, barangay Lagunde, Lenugen, and Kolambog in Pikit, adjacent municipality to Aleosan.

Mindanao Tulong Bakwet (MTB) documentation team interviewed residents of Sitio Manili, a hundredmeter away from Sitio Risingan regarding the strife. According to the residents, since the 19th of July commander Bravo and his group have been attacking the detachment of CAFGU in Manggahan. In return, the CAFGUs fired back to Bravo’s group that hit the houses of civilians in the area. These CAFGUs
were apparently the supporters of the municipal councillor Ungkay.

At present, the residents are averse to return home due to unstable condition in the sitio and that commander Bravo and his men were occupying the whole Sitio Risingan.
Residents in Manili already packed their things and ready to flee anytime if the fighting continues.

According to Roqayyah, one of the residents in the Sitio, during night time all residents would have to sleep in two classrooms in Manili as Bravo’s group continue to harass the CAFGU detachment. She said they have to be ready to vacate the place if the strife comes to worst.

One of the MTB construction workers assigned in Risingan said there was a renewed harassment last night that lasted for 10 minutes.

The long standing rido between Councilor Ungkaya and Commander Bravo flared up anew due to stolen carabao which until now the culprits are not yet identified. This rido started for over five years and according to the residents this conflict rooted to territory until such time the retaliations from both side never end.

In 2009, the family of councillor Ungkaya was ambushed allegedly by Bravo’s group that resulted to death of a nine-year old girl and wounded five others including minors.# (SSM)

Explosive Ordnance Team investigates blast in Datu Piang

13 July 2010
Datu Piang, Maguindanao

Datu Piang – Explosive Ordnance Team (EOD) of 6th infantry division has arrived in Datu Piang this morning together with the elements of 29th IB led by Lt. Col Benedict Arevalo to conduct further investigation on the incident of explosion took place in the main gate of Municipal Police Station, near the police outpost here.

The EOD team findings is the same with the initial spot report done by the municipal police saying that the bomb is from 81 mm Improvised Explosive Device (IED) concealed in a black adidas backpack and buried on the ground where the PNP outpost is located. Recovered at the place of incident were fragments of batteries, cellular phone and 81 mm.

The explosion took place on July 12, 2010 at 8: 10 in the evening killing an eight-year old boy and wounding two other children and a school supervisor in municipality of Datu Saudi Ampatuan.

Nasser Kimpao, one of the victims was driving his motorcycle and passed at the municipal plaza when the incident happened. Moctar, one of the children victims just followed his father in a restaurant near the blast site but while on their way home riding in a ‘trisikad’ the sudden blast was heard. The boy immediately died due to severe wounds while his father was not hurt. Yasser and Manuel were also walking along the highway when the explosion happened and were hit by shrapnels of the IED.

The survivors were immediately rushed to a private hospital, Yasser and Manuel were referred to Maguindanao Provincial Hospital and Kimpao with minor wound on his leg was escorted to his residence after he received medical treatment.

The victims are all residents of Poblacion, Datu Piang. Yasser and Manuel are first year high school students in a private school in the municipality.

The burial of Moctar was immediately arranged and set in the afternoon today following the Muslim tradition that dead should be buried within twenty four hours.

At present, suspects on the incident were not yet identified by the local police but the investigation is still ongoing.# (EGM)

Eight-year old boy killed in a blast

12 July 2010

Datu Piang, Maguindanao – A loud explosion killed one eight-year old boy and wounding two other children and a school supervisor around 8:10 in the evening at the municipal plaza here.

One of the victims was identified by the Displacement Watch as Nasser Kimpao, a school supervisor in Datu Saudi Ampatuan. Kimpao was driving his motorcycle and passed at the municipal plaza when the incident happened.

The eight-year old boy who died on the spot just followed his father in a restaurant near the blast site but while on their way home riding in a motorcycle the incident took place. The boy immediately died due to severe wounds while his father was not hurt.

At present, the survivors were receiving medical treatment at the private hospital in Datu Piang. The motive of the explosion is not yet identified by the local police.

Meanwhile in Barangay Balanaken, there is an ongoing displacement due to alleged presence of Commander Adzmi of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) and his long-time rival Commander Abunawas also of the MILF was reportedly going home to Balanaken. The residents decided to flee due to fear of fighting between the commanders who have been fighting that emanated from land ownership.

The residents from Barangay Balanaken fled to DSUA compound and community in Buayan.# (EGM)

Rido flares-up in Datu Piang wounded four children and two others

12 July 2010
Reigna Regente, Datu Piang

Four children and two other civilians were hit by shrapnels believed to be from 81 mm mortars allegedly fired by one of the warring clans in Barangay Reigna Rgenta, Datu Piang, Maguindanao at around 1: 00 in the afternoon on July 8, 2010 at Sitio Binandal, Brgy. Macasendeg, Pikit North Cotabato.

Mindanao Tulong Bakwet (MTB) documentation team had a chance to interview some of the relatives of the victims attending to them at the Cotabato Regional and Medical Center (CRMC). According to Wahida Sali, mother of one of the victims, around 8:00 in the morning of the same day July 8, 2010 they heard a series of explosions in Barangay Reigna Regente, where there is an ongoing fighting due to “rido” between the forces of Tata Uy and a certain commander Samama is happening.

At around 1: 00 o’clock in the afternoon, while having their siesta inside their house, they heard a sudden explosion of bomb dropped at the river near their house. They immediately ran outside the house to flee from the area and seek some concealment and safe areas to hide. The children along with other civilians ran towards the Mango tree, few meters away from their house but unfortunately, another bomb dropped at the tree followed by a loud blast and they were hit by the shrapnels of the bomb.

Muhamad Abdul died on the spot, Amia Kasim was severely wounded on her right pelvic bone, Laga Laga Kasim was hit in her right abdomen while Muslimin Sali , Fatima, Tukan Abdul and Tutin Pamaloy were slightly wounded on different parts of their bodies.

The victims were immediately brought to the Rural Health Unit of Datu Piang Municipality and received first aid medical assistance. The RHU medical officer discharged the other victims after receiving medical attention aside from Laga Laga Kasim and Amia Kasim that were advised to be delivered to CRMC in Cotabato City for they need a more comprehensive medical attention based on their situation. Amia needs to undergo urgent operation as she is in a critical condition.

On the same day, an ambulance was provided through the help of the Local Government of Datu Piang to deliver the victims to CRMC. Staff from Medicine Sans Frontier (MSF) also facilitated the victims and provided the medicines needed.

To date, Amia Kasim and Laga Laga continuously receiving medical attention for almost five days and still recovering from the traumatic experience they had. According to Wahida Sali, they will no longer return to Sitio Binandal and prefer to transfer in Paidu Pulangi, Pikit, North Cotabato after what had happened because of fear that the same incident might happened again given that the conflict between two warring clans is still ongoing and there is no indications when to end.# (EGM)