The Philippine Army is providing medical care assistance to an apprehended New People’s Army (NPA) commander who was wounded in a recent armed encounter with the 53rd Infantry “Matapat” Battalion (53IB) in Zamboanga Del Sur.
Alias “Jotham/Henry,” the commander of NPA’s Main Regional Guerilla Unit (MRGU) in Zamboanga Del Sur was abandoned by his communist comrades after he suffered gunshot wounds in the said encounter on September 21, 2020.
53IB troops immediately brought Jotham Henry to Kuta Major Cesar Sang-an Station Hospital for medical treatment in the Army’s 1st Infantry “Tabak” Division headquarters in Labangan, Zamboanga del Sur.
During his visit to the hospital, 53IB Commanding Officer Lt. Col. Jo-ar Herrera said it is just right to treat the wounded even if he is an enemy.
“We recognize that he cannot fight anymore. Though he is the enemy of the people and the State, he still deserves medical treatment,” Lt. Col. Herrera said.
“We tend to them and accord them with the medical care they need because we are professionals and we have to adhere to our laws,” Herrera added.
Herrera cited Rule 110 of the International Humanitarian Law (IHL), saying that there is “no distinction may be made among them founded on any grounds other than medical ones.”
The said IHL Rule is based on the common Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions, which provides that “the wounded and sick shall be collected and cared for,” Herrera said.
“Caring for the wounded enemy is not just for a show. All of their lives they were taught with lies. We want to show them that the government and the soldiers genuinely have a heart for them,” Herrera said.