At least 1 confirmed dead, many wounded as police fire on Cotabato human barricade
April 1, 2016 10:45 AM
Protesting farmers begin their barricade of the Cotabato-Davao highway in Kidapawan City Wednesday.
The online news portal of TV5
MANILA, Philippines — (UPDATE – 11:18 a.m.) At least one person was confirmed dead and six others wounded, with several others still unaccounted for, when security forces opened fire on farmers andlumad who have been blockading the Cotabato-Davao highway in Kidapawan City late Friday morning with organizers reporting still unspecified casualties, including children.
InterAksyon.com could hear gunshots in the background as Jerome Succor Aba, spokesman of Moro human rights group Suara Bangsamoro, described the situation.
Aba said the firing began soon after Kidapawan Mayor Joseph Evangelista arrived at the protest site.
“I saw our companions falling and some children were also hit. They are continuing to shoot at us,” he said.
Norma Capuyan of the lumad organization Sandawa Lumadnong Panaghiusa-Cotabato, who gave the casualty county, said many of the protesters have sought shelter at the Methodist Center but were unable to bring the casualties to a hospital because “the police are right at the gate.”
She said the trouble began when firetrucks deployed to the barricade site bombarded them with water cannon and riot police moved in.
When the protesters resisted, “the shooting started,” she said.
Capuyan added, “We fear many more have been hurt because many of our companions remain unaccounted for.”
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