MANILA, Philippines?The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) is not only thriving, it is exporting its cadres to train Maoist insurgents in India, according to reports reaching the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA).
A DFA senior official, who asked not to be named saying he did not want to preempt an official reaction from the agency, said the Philippine government was expecting an official request from New Delhi for help in tracking down the CPP members in India.
Indian media reports over the weekend said two suspected Naxalites recently arrested in the western Indian state of Gujarat had confessed to their police interrogators that CPP members had been training them in guerrilla warfare.
This is the first time that the CPP?Southeast Asia?s longest-lived communist insurgent group?has been reported to have engaged in such training activities overseas.
The CPP was founded in 1968 by English teacher Jose Maria Sison, who is now 71 and lives in exile in the Netherlands.
Military officials say that the CPP has become irrelevant since the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 that led to the collapse of the Soviet Union. The officials say that the CPP?s armed wing, the New People?s Army (NPA), is nothing more than a bandit group engaged in blackmail and extortion.
The daily Indian Express described as ?startling? the revelation that international Maoist groups were involved in arms training.
One such training took place in the forests of the southwestern state of Kerala, according to the suspects.
Police based in Gujarat?s Surat district who conducted the arrests said that the Naxalites were operating among landless tribal farmers in the neighboring Dang district.
The DFA official said it was possible that the CPP members who went to India came from Europe, saying most Filipinos who go to India are businessmen.
The CPP?s political front, the National Democratic Front, is based in the Netherlands. The CPP and the NPA are considered terrorist groups by United States.