Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Update 2: Philippine Police Name Massacre Suspect as More Bodies Recovered

Philippine authorities have found more bodies in a shallow grave on the southern island of Mindanao, bringing the total number of victims in a massacre there to at least 57, including 18 journalists. Police have named a suspect, a member of a powerful political family, but there are doubts that authorities will bring those responsible to justice. And there are wider concerns about democracy in the Philippines.

Philippine police on Wednesday said their investigation focuses on Andal Ampatuan, Jr., a member of the powerful Ampatuan family, which dominates politics in Maguindanao province. He is suspected of being behind one of the worst cases of election violence in the history of the Philippines and the most journalists murdered in a single attack.

The victims were in a convoy of vehicles Monday heading to register a candidate to challenge Ampatuan in next year's election for governor. Among the dead are the wife and sisters of the challenger, Ismael Mangudadatu.

Amina Rasul is the director of the Philippines Council for Islam and Democracy. She says despite the police investigation it will be difficult for authorities to enter Ampatuan territory, let alone arrest a member of the family.



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I am a law enforcement professional with over 35 years experience in both sworn and civilian positions. I have service in 3 different countries in both the northern and southern hemispheres.

My principal areas of expertise are: (1) Intelligence, (2) Training and Development, (3) Knowledge Management, and (4) Administration/Supervision.

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