UNDOF chief's comment on Filipinos' escape offends Duterte
Rosalinda L. Orosa (The Philippine Star) - September 8, 2014 - 12:31pm

MANILA, Philippines — Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte was not pleased with the statement of the United Nations Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF) commander calling the actions of Philippine soldiers who escaped from Syrian rebels cowardly.

"I am offended na sinabi ng isang UN general na duwag daw ang ating mga sundalo," Duterte said in Cebuano in his weekly television program. "Kapag nakita niyo 'yung UN general barilin n'yo sa ulo, sabihin n'yo request ni Mayor Duterte."

UNDOF Commander Lt. Gen. Iqbal Singha was accused by the Philippine military of ordering the Filipino peacekepers trapped in Golan Heights late August to surrender their firearms to al-Qaeda-affiliated insurgents.

Singha said in an interview with India times that the actions of the Filipino troops were "non-professional" in having endangered the lives of Fijian peacekeepers who were earlier captured and taken hostage by the rebels.

The UN leadership, meanwhile, supported Singha's call despite the Filipino troops' defiance.

"It's a matter of judgment. But, I would say again that General Singha has exercised good sound judgment all along that process," UN Undersecretary for Peacekeeping Operations Hervé Ladsous said.

The Commission on Human Rights had previously called out Duterte for his "kill" threats against criminals in his turf.

"It's unbecoming of a public official like him. It gives the impression that we are not living under a government of laws," the rights agency said. - Camille Diola

CAMILLE DIOLA COMMANDER LT DAVAO CITY MAYOR RODRIGO DUTERTE DUTERTE GENERAL SINGHA GOLAN HEIGHTS HUMAN RIGHTS IQBAL SINGHA MAYOR DUTERTE PEACEKEEPING OPERATIONS HERV
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