BACOLOD CITY – Two Philippine Army soldiers were injured while four communist rebels were killed in a clash in Barangay Gawahon in Victorias City, Negros Occidental on Friday morning.
The wounded were identified as Cpl. Ramy Chiefe and Cpl. Louie Maghanoy of the 79th Infantry Battalion (IB).
According to the report of the 303rd Infantry Brigade (IB), troopers saw the communist-terrorists drag away their four dead comrades, and heavy bloodstains were found in the rebels' route of withdrawal. Col. Inocencio Pasaporte, commander of the 303rd IBde, said the Communist Party of the Philippines - New People’s Army (CPP-NPA) are deliberately sabotaging the efforts of government forces to help protect the people from the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-2019).
Soldiers of 79IB, together with policemen from the 6th Special Action Force Battalion, were conducting a health awareness campaign and security patrol in Sitio Sicaba at about 8:30 a.m. when the NPA rebels fired at them, leading to a 30-minute firefight.
They pursued the communist-terrorists and reached their lair, where they recovered two improvised explosive devices (IEDs) with blasting caps, a bandolier with five magazines for AK47 assault rifle, and another bandolier with two magazines of M16 rifle with ammunition.
The troopers also found two hand-held radios, two mobile phones, a binocular, a compass, four jungle packs containing personal belongings, five hammocks, eight blankets, 10 ponchos, three rain boots, assorted medicines, and subversive documents.
Lt. Col. Gerard Alvaran, commanding officer of 79IB, said that once again, it has been proven that NPA rebels are using IEDs as shown in the recovered items, which is a violation of the International Humanitarian Law.
“While government troops are putting their lives at risk to help protect the people from Covid-19, communist-terrorists are taking this as an opportunity to violate human rights," he added.
The CPP-NPA is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines. (PNA)