DOJ: Probe into activist killings 'somehow restricted' by ECQ


Posted at Apr 05 2021 06:20 PM

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The Department of Justice said on Monday its investigation into the recent killing of several activists was "somehow restricted" by the toughest quarantine level imposed in Metro Manila and four surrounding provinces. 

Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra said his agency formed "special investigating teams" to look into the March police raids that left dead 9 activists in Calabarzon region and the fatal shooting of union leader Dandy Miguel 3 weeks later. 

"All of these special investigating teams have already been constituted and sad to say that their movements are somehow restricted by the ongoing situation, we are under ECQ (enhance community quarantine)," Guevarra said in a press briefing.

"But they have started working and they will submit their initial reports to me at the soonest possible time." 

The DOJ chief did not detail the difficulties of the investigators during the strictest quarantine level that bans mass gatherings and non-essential movement. 

Guevarra said "based on the initial information," the cases might fall under the jurisdiction of the inter-agency committee on extra-judicial killings (EJKs), enforced disappearance and torture. 

"We are not saying that this is exactly a case of EJK... In the process of investigation, there will be a determination whether in fact this is a case of EJK. So that is not a final conclusion as yet. This will be borne out by the actual investigation," he said.