1 killed, 1 wounded in clashes between gov’t troops and NPA in Bukidnon
DAVAO CITY — Hostilities between government forces and communist guerrillas in the province of Bukidnon intensified this week, leaving casualties on both sides.
A soldier was killed while another was hurt in a firefight in Impasug-ong town in Bukidnon on Wednesday noon, according to Ka Malem Mabini, spokesperson of the New People’s Army (NPA)-North Central Mindanao Command.
The NPA’s Front 89 launched the “harassment” operations against government forces in the village of Bontongon in Impasug-ong town, Mabini said in a statement.
“It was confirmed that one was killed-in-action and one was wounded-in-action in the AFP. They were then rescued by their utility helicopter,” Mabini said.
But the military denied Mabini’s claim, saying it was the NPA who suffered a fatality.
The first gunbattle started at 9:35 a.m. between the NPA and policemen from the Bukidnon Provincial Mobile Force Company, where a rebel was killed, said 403rd Infantry Brigade civil military officer Capt. Norman Tagros.
“The second encounter was around 12 noon yesterday and this resulted to the wounding of one of our soldiers from the 1st Special Forces Battalion,” Tagros told the Inquirer.
Tagros said the injured soldier was immediately evacuated to a military hospital for medical treatment.
The officer said the operations in Bukidnon was part of the joint internal security campaign plan of the 4th Infantry Division and the Police Regional Office 10.
The government and the National Democratic Front earlier signed the Agreement on a Stand-Down for the Resumption of the Formal Peace Talks at the end of the backchannel negotiations in Utrecht, The Netherlands, on June 8. It was signed supposedly to provide a “positive atmosphere conducive to moving forward and completing the peace negotiations and the implementation of agreements.”
But President Duterte decided to put on hold the talks and asked for three months to review all signed agreements.
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