Priests condemn killing of anti-mining leader’s family

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MANILA, Oct. 24, 2012— A Catholic priest has condemned the killing of a mother and her two children following an encounter between soldiers and tribesmen opposed to Tampakan mining project in South Cotabato.

Fr. Joy Peleno, social action director of the Diocese of Marbel, called on the government to bring those responsible for the death of Juvy Capion and her two kids to justice.

“Sinuman yung nararapat na managot ay bahagi nang pagpapatibay ng pamahalaan,” Peleno told Manila archdiocese-run Radio Veritas on Wednesday.

“Nanawagan tayo ng isang objective investigation upang makita na hindi natatakpan ang katotohanan sa kasong pamamaslang,” he said.

Capion, 28, was the wife of Daguel, leader of the armed band who declared war against Sagittarius Mines operating in Tampakan town for allegedly abusing the rights of B’laan tribesmen.

Anti-mining and human rights groups accused soldiers from the 27th Infantry Battalion as behind the killing of the victims.

Daguel was reportedly wounded in last Thursday’s clash, and is said to be in critical condition in an undisclosed hospital.

Jaybee Garganera of Alyansa Tigil Mina said that Daguel was leading a campaign to protect their rights and their ancestral lands.

“We strongly condemn this barbaric and treacherous act of the military, against Daguel and his family,” Garganera said.

“He is a B’laan warrior tasked by his clan to protect the ancestral domains. In this case, the most obvious threat against their domain right now is the Tampakan Mining Project of SMI,” he added.

Italian Catholic priest Fr. Peter Geremia, assistant parish priest of Arakan in North Cotabato and head of the Tribal Filipino Desk of the Diocese of Kidapawan, also denounced the incident. (|CBCPNews)


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