Friday, October 29, 2010

Water torture used on Cotabato bus blast suspects?: ABS-CBN

COTABATO CITY, Philippines - The mother of 2 of the suspects in the deadly Rural Transit Bus bombing in Matalam, North Cotabato has accused law enforcers of torturing her sons to own up to the crime.

Kalamma Alimanan, mother of Ibrahim Alimanan and Alamin Samal, said she was devastated when she saw the bruises on her sons.

In an interview, she said her sons were tortured to admit that they were the ones responsible for the bus bombing that killed 10 people last Thursday. At least one of her sons had 2 broken ribs, she said, while both had their heads held under water to simulate drowning.

"Niyakap ko sila tapos sabi nila, 'Mamang, tingnan mo, nabali ang dalawa kong ribs'. Nakita ko maitim na ang kanyang bewang. Sinabi din nila na binabalot sila sa ulo ng cellophane tapos nilublob sa tubig. Pinapaamin sa kasalanang hindi nila ginawa. Inosente ang mga anak ko," Kalamma said.

(I hugged them both and they said, 'Mama, look, 2 of my ribs are broken. I saw that the area near his waist was black. They also said that their heads were wrapped in cellophane and then dunked in water. They were being forced to admit to something they didn't do. My sons are innocent.)

She also said law enforcers did not show a warrant when arresting the 2. "I asked them if they had a warrant and they couldn't answer," she said.

Kalamma said their family will file a case against the authorities for violating her sons' rights. The 2 are currently facing charges of multiple murder, multiple frustrated murder and multiple attempted murder before the Provincial Prosecutor's Office in Kidapawan City.

The Mindanao Human Rights Center based in Cotabato City said they will help ensure that the rights of the 2 suspects are protected.

MINHRAC executive director Atty. Zainudin Malang said that while he condemns the bus bombing, policemen should not violate the rights of people just to solve the case.

"We are calling the attention of the national government because what the police did last week is a violation of human rights," Malang said.

He also called on the local government of Cotabato City and the provincial government of Maguindanao to conduct a parallel investigation on the arrest done by authorities. (Lore Mae Andong - ABS-CBN Central Mindanao)

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