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The IMT Verification Report

On the January 25, 2015


Mamasapano Incident

Overview
IMT is a neutral body tasked to assist in the
monitoring of the implementation of the
ceasefire agreements between the GPH
and MILF
Authorised to conduct a Verification Mission
on the Mamasapano incident; mission
conducted with support from GPH and MILF
ceasefire committees
Submitted via email to the GPH Panel on 5
April 2015

Overview (cont)
Objectives: As a neutral body, to
Verify allegations of violations of the
ceasefire agreement provisions
Propose recommendations to avoid
recurrence of similar incidents and
enhance the ceasefire mechanisms

Report submitted by email to GPH


Panel on 5 April 2015

Limitations
Area: not granted access to site
where Marwan was killed due to
security considerations
Mission limited to verification only
not to make thorough
investigations.

Summary of Findings
Valid law enforcement operation by the PNP
Ceasefire protocols not observed during planning and
execution of Oplan Exodus
Site of encounter between the 55 th SAF and MILF-BIAF is
accepted to be an MILF area/community under the
control of BIAF base commanders
Raises questions on clear definition of what constitutes
and MILF area/community other than those referred to in
signed documents (i.e. Joint Acknowledgement of 10 Feb
1999 and Joint Statement of 17 Feb 1999)

After raid on Marwans hut and subsequent clash


between 84th Sac and BIFF, the PNP-SAF at some point
engaged the MILF-BIAF which went from the status of
deliberately uncoordinated movements to a disastrous
firefight between the 55th SAC and elements of the BIAF
105th BC.

Findings on Possible Ceasefire


Violations
1) On MILF providing sanctuary to
criminal or lawless elements:
No evidence to show that the MILFas an
organization provided sanctuary or
assistance
However, this does not dispel claims that
some members of the MILF might have had
knowledge of the whereabouts of Marwan
and Usman

Findings on Possible Ceasefire


Violations
2) On PNP SAFs lack of coordination
with the MILF prior to Jan 25, 2015:
Para 6, part VI of the Implementing
Guidelines of the Joint Communique of 6
May 20012 may be interpreted in two ways
with respect to LEOs against HVTs: i) AHJAG
can inform CCCH less than 24 hours before
or within reasonable time for civilian
evacuations and to avoid armed
confrontation between GPH and MILF forces;
OR ii) exemption

Findings on Possible Ceasefire


Violations
2) On PNP SAFs lack of coordination with the
MILF prior to Jan 25, 2015:
- To avoid uncertainties, the IMT recommended this
provision be clarified by its crafters. Until clarification
is made, any LEO against HVTs AHJAG must still
inform CCCH less than 24 hours prior to the
operations and within reasonable time to allow
evacuation of civilians and to avoid untoward
incidents
- Failure of PNP SAF to have prior coordination with
AFP, other PNP forces, CCCH and AHJAG is a violation
by the GPH of Article II of the AGCH of 1997.

Findings on Possible Ceasefire


Violations
3) On alleged aggressive actions such as
attacks, raids, ambuscades and offensive
military actions:
- There is probable cause to assume that the PNP
SAF opened fire resulting in the two KIA from the
BIAF side when said BIAF fighters tried to cross
the bridge in Mamasapano as supported by the
bullet marks and blood stains on the bridge.
- This indicates a full firefight rather than a mere
uncoordinated movement. This is a violation by
the GPH of Para 3b, Article I of the AGCH of 1997
(aggressive actions such as attacks, ambuscades,
etc.

Findings on Possible Ceasefire


Violations
3) On alleged aggressive actions such
as attacks, raids, ambuscades and
offensive military actions:
- BIAFs actions can be seen as a response to
the non-coordinated movements which
cannot be categorized as a violation of Article
I of the AGCH of 1997
- However, BIAFs entry into the cornfields
which led to an armed clash with the 55 th SAC
may be considered as a violation of para 3b,
Article I of the AGCH ogf 1997

Findings on Possible Ceasefire


Violations
4) On the conduct of terrorist acts such as
robberies and summary executions:

- No violation on the part of MILF BIAF against Article I of the


AGCH, para 3A (Summary executions and IHL) nor violated
IHL; But the IMT posited that the MILF BIAF should have
respected their counterparts and the SAF commandos
consistent with the Rome Statue and RA 9851 forbidding
pillage.
- Items taken by MILF BIAF from fallen PNP SAF are
considered military and not personal items (i.e. cellphones
though personal items being used as communications tools
or as military items in this case)
- No sufficient evidence that summary executions against
PNP SAF that the IMLF BIAF were the perpetrators (no
witnesses).
- PNP SAF (member, 55th SAC) who killed 4 sleeping MILF
fighters on Jan 26 is a violation og Art I of AGCH para 3A
(summary execution and OHL)

Findings on Possible Ceasefire


Violations
5) On the civilian protection aspect:
- Two civilians killed on January 25, 2015, one after
being apprehended by the PNP SAF 55th SAC. Cause
of death was crossfire but verification did not yiled
conclusions as to who fired the fatal shots.
- Violation of Agreement on CPC of 2009:
Indiscriminate use of force: Most MILF fighters carry
firearms while interacting with civilians adding
confusion to law enforcement agencies and which
could result to civilian casualties
- If it can be proven that PNP SAF failed to take
precautions to protect civilians: violation of IHL and
RA 9851 Section 4(c) (7)

Recommendations
To resolve the issue or deter future similar cases from
occurring, the IMT recommended that:
The GPH coordinate and initiate the use of the conflict
preventive mechanisms available when launching LEO in
known MILF areas
There is a need to clarify further what is provided in Part VI
(Mechanics of Implementation) Paragraph 6 of the AHJAG
Implementing Guidelines on the Joint Communiqu of 6 May
2002.
A higher ranking PNP Office should be assigned to GPH CCCH
The MILF BIAF strengthen its command and control among its
ranks as well as intelligence in their organization
The Parties should uphold and observe the laws of war,
international humanitarian law, and their respective rules of
engagement and codes of conduct
The PNP and BIAF combatants found to have committed
crimes should be penalized accordingly under RA 9851