AFP in Basilan accused of torture anew

A day after Malacañang said it would go after human rights violators, a male youth has accused Basilan-based Armed Forces soldiers of torture anew.

GMA News’ “24 Oras" reported that the alleged torture victim was arrested on June 23, 2011 in his Basilan home. He was then brought to the Special Operations Task Force Headquarters in Basilan.

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The youth, whose identity was withheld, alleged that while he was in custody of the soldiers, he was beaten up and dunked in a barrel of water so he would admit to being part of the terrorist group Abu Sayyaf. The youth maintains that he is a student and is not part of the Abu Sayyaf.

He is now detained at the Basilan Provincial Jail for illegal possession of explosives, an accusation he has also denied.

Armed Forces Human Rights Office chief Colonel Domingo Tutaan Jr. said the military will investigate the matter.

On Monday, Malacañang said it would go after human rights violators in light of news that soldiers of the Philippine Army had tortured Abdulkan Ajid Balinting, 39, who also arrested on suspicion of being member of Abu Sayyaf. — BC/VS, GMA News