This refers to news article “Military wonâ€™t name intel agents in alleged torture”. Torture is totally unacceptable and cannot be justified in any circumstances–not even in time of war.
By refusal of Colonel Tristan Kison, Armed Forces chief information officer, to disclose the identities of military intelligence agents allegedly involved in illegally arresting and torturing the five men, or the so called UMDJ 5, he virtually shielded them from being prosecuted.
Colonel Kison must be told to adhere to Section 12 (2) of the 1987 Constitution which reads: No torture…which vitiate the free will shall be used against him [person].
While Colonel Kison may not have yet clearly exonerates their men from committing acts of illegal arrest and torture, but his refusal to disclose their identities citing “security purposes” has actually tolerated the acts itself.
Why should the military’s institution and reputation be at stake to defend the acts of this undesirable officers? Let them defend their selves to prove their innocence not others–in particular military officials.
Torture is among the many examples of military’s unacceptable practices. How could armed forces claimed to uphold rule of law and protect human rights when they even refused to name officers arbitrarily using authority and are accused of violating rights. In this case, they themselves are virtually tolerating the acts of their officers.
Although it is true that these military officers deserves due process–to look into whether the allegations against them are true or not–perhaps thereby the reason for withholding their identities. But did Colonel Kison also thought of this when he publicly accuses the five men as “enemy, from the Left” in absence of proper trial?
Colonel Kison’s statement displays uneven treatment to persons accused of committing offense. While they thought the military officers involved deserves to have their names withheld torture victims do not deserve to seek redress or remedy.