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Palace: 301 NPA ‘child warriors’ slain or captured since ‘99

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By Joel Guinto
First Posted 16:58:00 09/24/2008

MANILA, Philippines — Since 1999, 301 alleged child combatants of the communist New People’s Army (NPA) have been killed, captured or surrendered to government security forces, Executive Secretary Eduardo Ermita claimed on Wednesday.

Citing data from the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), Ermita said of the 301, 108 were arrested, 182 surrendered, and 11 were killed.

Ermita said the government is bent on raising the alleged recruitment of child warriors by the NPA, the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), and the Abu Sayyaf before the United Nations.

But the Palace official could not provide an estimate of the child warriors allegedly used by the MILF and the Abu Sayyaf.

“The important thing is, we want to let them [international community] know that groups fighting government [are] resorting to something like this,” he said.

Ermita said it was as a way of getting back at the rebels whom he described as “very fond of throwing rocks at us,” especially on the alleged involvement of security forces in extrajudicial killings.

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Written by joelguinto

WedUTC2008-09-24T12:55:42+00:00UTC09bUTCWed, 24 Sep 2008 12:55:42 +0000 22, 2006 at 12:45 pm09

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