After ‘great escape’ in Syria, PH commander escapes from Undof chief | Global News

After ‘great escape’ in Syria, PH commander escapes from Undof chief

By: - Reporter / @BLozadaINQ
/ 05:25 PM September 02, 2014

U.N. soldiers observe Syria’s Quneitra province at an observation point near the border with Syria, Monday, Sept. 1, 2014. AP

MANILA, Philippines – After planning the “greatest escape,” the Philippine Chief of Staff of the United Nations Disengagement Observer Force stationed in Golan Heights has taken a leave of absence, the military said.

Major General Domingo Tutaan, Armed Forces of the Philippines spokesman, said Tuesday that Colonel Ezra Enriquez’s decision to go on leave stemmed from his “lack of faith” in the leadership of Lieutenant General Iqbal Singh Singha, Undof commander, stationed in Golan Heights.


When Syrian rebels attacked and held hostage the Fijian contingent, Singha ordered the Philippine peacekeepers in Positions 68 and 69 to drop their arms.


He wanted the Filipinos to surrender their weapons and raise the white flag thinking that it would get the rebels to free the captured 44 Fijians.

Enriquez filed an administrative leave that would last until October, when the 331 Filipino UN Peacekeepers would return to the Philippines after their tour of duty in Syria.

Colonel Roberto Ancan, AFP Peacekeeping Operations Center Chief, said Enriquez had a dual duty as the Undof Chief of Staff and the Philippine contingent commander.

“He oversees the staff officers as well as the operation environment of the area,” Ancan said. “As the national contingent commander, he is still there, he was granted administrative lead.”

Despite Enriquez’s leave, Ancan said officer could still get in touch with Singha.

Enriquez is now stationed at Camp Faour while the Filipinos who escaped the Syrians are in Position 80.



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TAGS: Colonel Ezra Enriquez, leave of absence, UNDOF, United Nations Disengagement Observer Force

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