NPA frees 6 captive militiamen in Agusan del Sur
MANILA, Philippines — Six members of the Civilian Armed Auxiliaries (CAA) who were earlier abducted by the New People’s Army (NPA) were released in Agusan del Sur on Thursday night, a military official said.
In a statement on Friday, Eastern Mindanao Command Commander Major General Felimon Santos Jr. said the six militiamen were turned over by a third party facilitator to the 401st Infantry Brigade, 4th Infantry Division based at the 8th Special Forces Company headquarters in Sibagat, Agusan del Sur.
“The release was brought about by the pressure of the relentless military operations to rescue the said troops,” Santos said.
Aside from the six militiamen identified as Jurian Gaviola, Marson Iligan, Bienvinido Lamion, Eddie Tindoy, Sanny Malobay, and Hermito Iligan, there are still other troops who are still being held by communist rebels.
“As of this time, our units in the area are continuously conducting military operations to rescue the remaining troops who are still being held and used as human shields and propaganda subject by the NPAs,” Santos said.
According to Santos, the released militiamen will be given some time to spend with their families, before going through medical check-ups and a debriefing.
“Meantime, the released CAAs will be given time to talk with their immediate families, after which, they will undergo normal processing such as medical check-up and debriefing,” Santos explained.
He also assured residents of the area that the Army will not be deterred by the actions of the communist rebels.
“We are assuring our communities that this, propaganda means of “kidnap for presscon” to stop security operations and will allow them to continue conducting their recruitment, carry out atrocities against communities and to project a force to reckon with, will not affect our effort and commitment to protecting our communities and their right to live peacefully,” he said. /muf
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