Alleged rebel killed in series of clashes between Army troops, NPA rebels 

By Jennifer P. Rendon

An alleged member of the New People’s Army (NPA) was killed following a series of encounters between the rebel group and government forces over the weekend.

But the 301st Infantry Brigade is yet to identify the male fatality.

Brigadier General Michael Samson, 301st IB commander, said the rebel was killed during the second encounter with the 31st Division Reconnaissance Company (31DRC) at Sitio Tagbakan 1, Barangay Jayubo, Lambunao, Iloilo, around 8:05 a.m. of Dec. 10.

The second encounter happened while the soldiers were pursuing the rebels in the first encounter which happened at 7:57 a.m. on Dec. 9, also at Jayubo village.

In a press statement, the 3rd Infantry Division said there were only around 5 rebels that they encountered during the second clash.

The second firefight only lasted for about 5 minutes.

The soldiers also recovered a homemade shotgun.

In the first encounter, reports said that some 30 rebels from the Central Front of the Komiteng Rehiyon–Panay (KR-Panay) engaged with the DRC troops.

During the said encounter, the rebels left behind war materiel, including a bandolier with five M16 magazines and a backpack with personal belongings and subversive documents.

Relatedly, Samson said they received another reported clash between the same group and Army personnel in the vicinity of Manripay, Calinog around 5 p.m. on Sunday.

No other information was made available, as of this writing.

“They were pushed in the area because they were trying to flee from our pursuing troops,” he said.

Before the encounters, Samson said they already received a report about a gathering of NPA members from the different fronts in Panay.

The 301st IB is still checking if the gathering is related to the 55th founding anniversary of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP).

Meanwhile, Major General Marion Sison, l3rd ID commander, expressed his sympathy to the family of the slain communist terrorist member who he said wasted his life fighting for a senseless decades-long armed struggle.

“I don’t want another life to be wasted because of the false ideologies of the communist terrorist group. I don’t want to see families suffering from the loss of their loved ones, especially this Christmas,” he said.

Sison has again encouraged the remaining NPA members to surrender and be with their families, especially during this holiday season.

He also commended the troops for another successful operation and stated that the Army has been making calls for the NPA remnants to surrender and avail themselves of the programs and services of the government.

“For a couple of times, we have been calling the remnants of the CNTs to lay down their arms and go back to the folds of the law and avail themselves of the government’s programs offered to them. We will always adhere to the tasks mandated to us, that is, to protect the people and secure the communities that were greatly affected by insurgency brought by these lawless CNTs so that everyone will have a chance to live peacefully,” Sison said.