"From Estrada to Aquino, the 19th IB had killed 27 civilians in four massacres in Northern Samar and Leyte, the latest victims being botanist Leonard Co and his two assistants last November 2010." — NDFP Eastern Visayas
By NDFP Eastern Visayas
The National Democratic Front of the Philippines – Eastern Visayas said today that the New People's Army in Leyte is making the 19th Infantry Battalion of the Philippine Army pay for its crimes, and that battalion commander Lt. Col. Federico Tutaan is doggedly covering up his unit's losses as well as its various atrocities.
“The 8th Infantry Division through Col. Tutaan had long gloated that the NPA was finished in Leyte,” said Fr. Santiago Salas, NDFP-EV spokesperson. “But the NPA has made great advances in recent years, and from March 2010 to March 2011 has inflicted losses on the 19th IB of at least 40 soldiers killed in action and 12 wounded in action, and the confiscation of high-powered rifles and other weapons. While Col. Tutaan denies the 19th IB's losses, it is no wonder then that military deployment in Leyte has been upgraded from a single battalion to approximately a brigade under the 802nd Infantry Brigade, now based in the island.”