Protestant pastor shot dead in church by suspected rebels



GUIHULNGAN CITY, Negros Oriental—A Protestant pastor was shot dead on Tuesday by suspected communist rebels outside his church in Barangay Calupaan in this city.

Senior Insp. George Badon, Guihulngan police chief, said Leonardo Bacolod was coming out of his room outside the Christian Fellowship Church around 8 a.m. when he was shot at close range by one of six suspected members of the New People’s Army (NPA).

Bacolod suffered a gunshot wound in the head and died on the spot, said Badon.

Badon said police investigators found that the rebels arrived at the Christian Fellowship Church on Tuesday, looking for the village chief of Calupaan.

The church is located about 15 kilometers from the main road of Calupaan, which is considered as a rebel territory.

The rebels were heard shouting “show your firearm captain,” while firing their guns inside the church.

According to Badon, the village chief slept inside a room at the back of the church. His room was next to the sleeping quarters of Bacolod.

The rebels then went to the back of the church. At that time, Bacolod was going out of his room to go to the kitchen where his wife was preparing breakfast.

When the rebels saw him, one of them fired at Bacolod who was hit in the head. The rebels then left after the shooting.

The armed men used high powered firearms, according to police. Bullet casings for AK-47 rifle, M-14 rifle, Carbine, a shotgun and M-16 rifle found in and outside the church.

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