ARMS CACHE. Several high-powered firearms of the New People's Army are recovered by government troops in a forested area of Barangay Calpi, Bulan, Sorsogon on Thursday (April 21, 2022). The arms cache was hidden inside two drums buried on the ground. (Photo courtesy of PRO-5)

LEGAZPI CITY – Several high-powered firearms and ammunition of the New People's Army (NPA) were recovered during joint operations of the Police Regional Office in Bicol (PRO-5) and the Philippine Army in a forested area of Barangay Calpi, Bulan, Sorsogon on Thursday.

In a statement Friday, Maj. Malu Calubaquib, PRO-5 spokesperson said the arms cache hidden inside two blue drums buried on the ground was recovered with a tip from an informant.

Troops recovered two M16 rifles; 8,190 live ammunition for caliber 5.56mm; 48 M16 magazines; and 19 M14 magazines.

"The discovery of the firearms and ammunition is another manifestation that the rebels continue to lose not only their manpower but as well as its firepower capabilities. A positive indication that the government through the police and military is realistically winning the campaign against insurgency," Calubaquib added.

Brig. Gen Jonnel Estomo, PRO5 director, in a statement, thanked the Army for its support to the Philippine National Police and assured that the Bicol police would continue to work closely with the military to end the atrocities of the communist terrorist group.

The Communist Party of the Philippines (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.

The Anti-Terrorism Council also formally designated the National Democratic Front (NDF) as a terrorist organization on June 23, 2021, citing it as “an integral and inseparable part” of the CPP-NPA that was created in April 1973. (PNA)