CAMP PERLTA, Jamindan, Capiz– One rebel was killed and an NPA encampment was seized following a series of encounters between the government forces and the New People’s Army (NPA) in Sitio Nabuswangan and Sitio Magkaatip of Brgy Maniac, Guihulngan City in Negros Oriental at 9:50 a.m. today November 9.
Troops of 11th Infantry Battalion under Lt. Col. Paulito Idul and 1Lt Chino Cornelio were conducting community security patrol in said village when they were fired upon by more or less seven (7) lawless armed elements believed to be members of the Central Negros Front, Komiteng Rehiyonal-Negros (CNF, KR-N).
Twenty (20) minutes of running gun battle ensued while the government forces pursued the fleeing rebels.
Lt. Col. Paulito Idul, Commanding Officer of 11IB said “Our troops engaged the remnant forces of the NPA bandits which resulted to the wounding of one of our troops. The NPA rebels withdrew in disarray leaving behind one of their dead comrades.”
Wounded in the encounter was Private First Class Jennifer Carbajosa who was slightly hit on his forehead. He was immediately brought to the nearest hospital and now in stable condition.
Identity of the slain NPA rebel is still being withheld pending prior notification of next of kin.
While pursuing the rebels, an NPA encampment was discovered by the troops. Said encampment believed to be occupied by the NPA rebels few days ago is composed of a training area, makeshift structures, a kitchen and a foxhole.
Recovered from the scene of encounter and encampment were (1) KG-9 Sub-machinegun, four (4) backpacks with subversive documents, training materials, assorted medicines, kitchen utensils, and personal belongings.
Blood stains were seen along the NPA’s withdrawal routes believed to be those of wounded NPA members.
Idul added that “We have already identified their (NPA’s) lairs and they have no place to go. We call on those rebels to lay down their arms peacefully, be given proper medication and we ensure them that their rights will be respected.”
Prior to encounter, residents of said village reported to the Army personnel about the presence of lawless armed elements that are planning to conduct atrocities against the government forces and the populace.
Col Jon Aying, Commander of Army’s 303rd Brigade said, “We appreciate the valuable information from the residents and we acted upon the call of the people to preserve the peace in their community.”
Government troops are now conducting follow-on operations to ensure the security and safety of the civilians and to run after the fleeing lawless elements.
Meanwhile, Major General Rey Leonardo Guerrero, Commander of the Army’s 3rd Infantry Division lauded the efforts of 11IB in maintaining the peaceful environment in Guihulngan.
MGen Guerrero instructed the troops to strictly follow the rule of law while conducting follow-on operations in the area. He also expressed his sympathy to the family and relatives of the slain NPA rebel.
“We in the Army, together with the local government, the civil society, peace advocates and other stakeholders reiterate our call for the NPA to shun violence, abandon the armed struggle and talk with us peacefully. Working together is the only way for us to end the insurgency problem of our country,” Guerrero added.
Members of the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) and the Philippine National Police Scene of the Crime Operatives (SOCO) are now conducting investigation in the scene of encounter.