Bangued, Abra — Clashes that broke out in this province last Thursday between the military and remnants of the New People’s Army (NPA) in the Cordilleras raged on, with the weekend death toll reaching 10, including an army trooper and a civilian.
The longest of the series of encounters started last Friday at 9:35 p.m. and ended 5 a.m. Saturday in Barangay Guinguinabang, Lacub, Abra.
Rebels ambushed army troopers transporting the body of a rebel slain in the Thursday encounter, killing Private First Class (PFC) John Kevin Manuel, of the army’s 41st Infantry Battalion (41IB), said Lieutenant Colonel Virgilo Noora, 41IB commander.
Caught in the crossfire was civilian Noel Viste, a resident of Barangay Poblacion, Lacub, who died on-the-spot, added Noora.
He said two other NPA rebels were killed in the overnight gun battle.
Noora also confirmed that three soldiers were wounded and identified them as Corporal Gilbert Ba-awa, and PFCs James Ericson Danao and Randy Sayaan.
“The wounded soldiers are now being treated in a hospital in Bangued, Abra,” Noora said.
It was also reported that the captured firearms from the rebel was also increased to 15 after the soldiers recovered M16 and M14 rifles in the last encounter.
It was recalled that six NPA rebels were killed when the encounter broke out last Thursday morning while 13 high-powered guns were recovered.