ZAMBOANGA CITY: The military is holding a former professor who helped write propaganda books for communist leader Jose Maria Sison, a regional army spokesman said on Thursday.
Army Capt. Alberto Caber of the Eastern Mindanao Command, said Prof. Kim Gargar was wounded in a recent clash with government troops in Davao Oriental’s Cateel town. He said an automatic rifle was also recovered from Gargar in the village of Aliwagwag where troops killed a rebel leader.
He said Gargar was retrieved by members of the 67th Infantry Battalion under Lt. Col. Krish-namurti Mortela, and given first aid before being brought to the Davao Oriental provincial hospital.
“We are still interrogating Professor Kim Gargar and so far he is cooperating with us,” Caber told The Manila Times. “Prof. Gargar was unconscious an apparently abandoned by rebels when troops found him.”
Gargar told interrogators that he joined the NPA last year, but previously helped Sison in the production of several books aimed at exploiting villagers in the countryside. He said his wife works as a news writer for an online newspaper.
Gargar said he was a Physics professor at the University of the Philippines in Quezon City and also worked at the Don Mariano University in Cagayan de Oro City in Misamis Oriental province and in Polytechnic University and Mapua University, both in Manila. He was also doctorate scholar in University of Groningen in The Netherlands.
Caber said the human rights group Karapatan has visited Gargar in Davao and allegedly told the former professor not to talk or give any statement to the military. Caber said the professor has praised the soldiers for saving his life.
General Ricardo Rainier Cruz 3rd, chief of the Eastern Mindanao Command, ordered military units to continue operations against the NPA and at the same urged rebels to surrender peacefully. He also commended the soldiers for saving the life of Gargar.
“Gargar is an example of how our soldiers really value and respect human rights,” Cruz said.
The NPA, armed wing of the Communist Party of the Philip-pines, has been fighting for a separate state in the country.