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NPA arsonist killed in an encounter with soldiers in Laguna

by Marje Pelayo   |   Posted on Friday, February 15th, 2019

Recovered paraphernalia | Photo courtesy of 2ID-PAO

RIZAL, Philippines – A member of the New People’s Army communist group said to be responsible for the burning of construction equipment in Quezon province last week was killed in an encounter with the military on Thursday (February 14) at Sitio Pinamintian, Barangay San Buenaventura, Luisiana, Laguna.

BGen. Arnulfo Burgos Jr., Commander of the 202nd Brigade directly supervising the on-going Focused Military Operation (FMO) said the arsonists were forced to withdraw towards Quezon-Laguna boundary in their attempt to escape soldiers from 80IB.

Soldiers were able to recover at the encounter site two (2) M16 magazines, two (2) Improvised Explosive Devices (IED), detonators with wires, ten (10) fixed tents, one (1) tablet, eight (8) cellular phones (two of them smart phones), one (1) Baofeng radio, one (1) NPA terrorists flag, one (1) pack medicines, three (3) bags and other training materials, according to the 2ID-PAO.

While withdrawing, the rebels encountered another group of soldiers from the 1IB who were conducting complementary operations at Brgy Kalangay, Lucban, Quezon resulting in another 15-minute firefight.

According to Lt.Col. Jonathan Manio, Battalion Commander of 1IB, an informant revealed that two female NPA terrorists were killed in the first encounter.

No one was hurt on the government side.

Manio said “all available troops including K9 dogs and the local police are now conducting hot pursuit operations.”

MGen. Rhoderick Parayno, the Commander of the Philippine Army’s 2ID lauded the latest accomplishments of the troops against the NPA terrorists responsible for the arson in Quezon.

The official urged the rebels to return to the government side to live a better life and reform for the sake of their families.

“We are not ruthless. I’m offering them refuge. If they want to be with their families and live peaceful, normal and productive lives, we will welcome them to just return to the fold of the law. I guarantee their safety and I’ll make sure that they receive all the benefits due them offered by the government”, Parayno said.

Meanwhile, Manio assured that “all available troops including K9 dogs and the local police are now conducting hot pursuit operations” against the rebels. – Marje Pelayo (with reports from Jennica Cruz / 2ID-PAO)

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AFP foils NPA extortion, seizes arms cache in Rizal

by Marje Pelayo   |   Posted on Monday, May 20th, 2019

Courtesy: AFP-2DPAO

RIZAL, Philippines — Elements of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) 80IB recovered assorted fire arms and ammunition during an intelligence operation against members of the New People’s Army (NPA) in the province last week.

According to the information from 202nd Brigade spokesperson and 2DPAO Chief Army Capt. Patrick Jay Retumban, soldiers were able to seize three firearms, five hand grenades and a rifle grenade in Sitio Batangasan, Barangay San Andres in the municipality of Tanay on Thursday (May 16).

80IB Commander Lt. Col. Christopher Diaz reported that “the war materiels belong to the terrorists’ extortion group who were targeting the farms in the area and, for the longest time, have been threatening the people of Tanay,”

“Your soldiers are, and will always be, ready to respond to any NPA terroristic actions,” Diaz assured the public while asking for the community’s continued support, cooperation and vigilance.

Meanwhile, Acting Commander (2ID) BGen. Elias Escarcha lauded the success of the troops’ operations against the NPA terrorists branded “enemies of the state”.

“The fact that the NPA terrorists left these war materiel as they tried to leave the area in a hurry is a manifestation of the NPA’s prevailing fear upon the government’s military might and their diminished will to fight,” Escarcha said.

202IB Commander BGen. Arnulfo Marcelo Burgos Jr, who has jurisdiction over CALABARZON, commended the operation saying “this accomplishment is a product of our former rebel engagements” wherein those who surrendered “actively participate in the government’s campaign against the NPA terrorists”. – Marje Pelayo (with details from Jennica Cruz / 2DPAO)

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6 dead, 9 injured in Calbiga, Samar ambush

by Aileen Cerrudo   |   Posted on Tuesday, April 23rd, 2019

Six members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) were killed while nine were injured during an ambush by suspected members of the New People’s Army (NPA) in Calbiga, Samar on Tuesday morning (April 23).

Members of the 46 Infantry Battalion (46-IB) were ambushed around 2:50 a.m. with the use of an improvised explosive device (IED) or a landmine which exploded in the area between Barangay Daligan and Barangay Baluan.

According to initial information of 46-IB, they were conducting a community support program when suspected NPA members waylaid their troops.

The 46-IB added that the encounter between the AFP and suspected rebel group continues. — Aileen Cerrudo

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Lacson pushes for localized peace talks; urges gov’t to exclude Sison from talks with Reds

by Maris Federez   |   Posted on Wednesday, April 17th, 2019

Senator Panfilo “Ping” Lacson (Courtesy: pinglacson.com)

Senator Panfilo Lacson believes it is high time for the government to focus its peace talk efforts with those who do not listen to Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) founding chairman Jose Ma. Sison.

Lacson stressed that the strength of the New People’s Army (NPA) rebels differs depending on their localities and that a localized peace talks is a much better way to stop the problem with communist rebels.

The senator said, “such a move is long in coming. I have always believed that this is the better way to deal with the five-decade insurgency problem.”

Lacson made the statement following President Rodrigo Duterte’s plan to create a new peace panel tasked to “oversee” localized peace talks.

Lacson added that he had dealt with the NPA when he was still with the Philippine National Police which he headed from 1999 to 2001 and had been battling for localized peace talks since then up until now as a member of the Senate.

“I have been batting for localized peace talks and in fact strongly suggested the same to former Peace Adviser Jesus Dureza and Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III in one committee hearing of the Senate Committee on Peace and Unification chaired and presided by Senator Gregorio Honasan II,” he added.

Lacson also suggested that local government officials negotiate with guerilla leaders in areas where the NPA is not that influential, while the military focuses on areas where the NPAs are a threat.

 “So it is better that governors and mayors and other LGU officials be the ones to talk to local communist guerrillas, under the guidance and direction of a government peace panel that will provide the parameters for such localized peace talks but with enough flexibility in handling such peace initiatives,” he said.

Lacson believes that it is useless to deal with Sison, as he does not have control over the NPA.

“Experience has shown that while Sison asks for a ceasefire and government accommodates his request, NPAs continue conducting ambushes and raids. This shows Sison no longer has control over the NPA’s armed regulars,” Lacson added.

The NPA, the armed wing of the CPP, had been declared by the Philippine government, as well as the United States, European Union, United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, and New Zealand, as a terrorist organization. – Maris Federez

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