The Trail of Blood: Following Army Gen. Jovito Palparan Jr. is reposting selected articles on extrajudicial killings, abductions and other human rights violations where retired Army Gen. Jovito Palparan Jr. has been implicated.

A look at the stories — the earliest were written in 2003 — shows that Palparan has left a trail of blood in areas where he had been assigned – Southern Tagalog, Central Luzon and Eastern Visayas.

Palparan was arrested early this morning by elements of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI). A warrant of arrest was issued against him by the Malolos Regional Trial Court Branch 14 for charges of kidnapping and serious illegal detention in relation to the enforced disappearance of University of the Philippines students Karen Empeño and Sherlyn Cadapan.

The arrest, torture, and enforced disappearance of Karen Empeño and Sherlyn Cadapan are one of the most horrendous cases Palparan was implicated in. The following articles and video clips about the Empeño-Cadapan case show the brutality of Palparan’s counterinsurgency campaign:

2 Missing UP Students Tortured, Raped inside Military Camp

VIDEO: Palparan faces DOJ probe, denies involvement in disappearance of 3 activists

Palparan faces DOJ probe, denies involvement in disappearance of 3 activists from Bulatlat on Vimeo.

VIDEO: Mothers of missing UP students file charges against Palparan, other Army officials

Mothers of missing UP students file charges against Palparan, other Army officials from Bulatlat on Vimeo.

VIDEO: Mothers of missing UP students file charges against Palparan, other Army officials

Raymond Manalo who served as a vital witness in the Empeño-Cadapan case also suffered torture from Palparan and his men.

Escaped Desaparecidos Are Vital Witnesses vs Palparan

In Outburst Vs Palparan, Torture Victim Vents Frustration Over Continuing Injustice

Palparan was also identified as the mastermind behind the murder of Southern Tagalog activists Eden Marcellana and Eddie Gumanoy. On April 21, 2003, Marcellana and Gumanoy led a fact-finding team to investigate human rights abuses in Gloria and and Pinamalayan towns in the province of Mindoro Oriental. On their way back to Calapan City, a group of some 20 armed men wearing ski masks abducted them. Their companions were eventually released but the two leaders were not. They were found dead the next day in Bansud, Oriental Mindoro. Their bodies bore signs of torture. The perpetrators, the so-called “Bonnet Gang” was linked with the Philippine Army’s 204th Infantry Battalion of which then Colonel Palparan was the commanding officer.

Gruesome Killing Enrages Militants

All the cases filed by the families were dismissed, compelling them to submit complaints before the United Nations Human Rights Committee. In a ruling dated October 30, 2008, the UN Committee declared that the Philippine government violated the rights of the victims.

UN Castigates Philippine Gov’t on Marcellana-Gumanoy Case

The succeeding articles describe the multiple violations and trail of blood that Palparan left wherever he was assigned.

From February to August 2005, Palparan was the commanding general of the 8th Infantry Division. Human rights group Katungod-SB documented 126 victims of extrajudicial killings and 27 disappearances under the Arroyo regime. Among those murdered were known activists and human rights advocates Atty. Felidito Dacut, Dr. Bartolome Resuello, Atty. Norman Bocar, Rev. Edison Lapus, Prof. Jose Ma. Cui, and Fr. Cecilio Lucero.

An overview of the human rights situation in Eastern Visayas

Palparan’s Path: Trail of Blood, Child Victims

Another COURAGE Member in Samar Assassinated

‘Where’s My Father?’

Six Months of Torment(First of Two Parts)

Death Squad Behind Lawyer’s Killing?

Palparan was assigned in Central Luzon from September 2005 until September 2006. According to Karapatan-Central Luzon, 53 individuals were killed and 24 were abducted and remained missing since Palparan was transferred to the region.

New Killings, Abductions Blamed on Palparan

CL: From Rice Fields into ‘Killing Fields’

Central Luzon Before Palparan’s New Command

A Second Brush with Palparan

Palparan’s Counterinsurgency Campaign Spawns Internal Refugees in Central Luzon

Palparan’s Legacy in CL: Lives Disrupted, Reign of Fear

Death Squads, the CIA and Political Killings in Central Luzon

Luisita farm workers recount Palparan’s terror campaign inside the hacienda

Palparan retired in 2006 and was assigned at the National Security Council. He also served as representative of Bantay partylist where he pursued his anti-communist campaign.

Cries for Justice Pursue Palparan

Did Palparan Plot Davao Journalist’s Murder?

Palparan battalion turns Davao communities into ghost towns

The arrest of the “Butcher” Palparan is a welcome development, but the fight for justice does not end with it. It is but a necessary first step. The relatives of the victims, human rights groups, and progressive organizations are determined to pursue justice, but whether justice would be served would depend on the political will of the government. (Ronalyn V. Olea /

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