1 soldier, 1 NPA killed in Rizal clash amid ceasefire – military
LUCENA CITY, Philippines – An Army soldier and an alleged fighter of the New People’s Army (NPA) were killed in a clash in Rodriguez town in Rizal province on Saturday, the military reported.
Captain Jayrald Ternio, head of the public affairs office of the Army’s 2nd Infantry Division, said an estimated 30 NPA rebels attacked a group of 18 soldiers in Barangay (village) Puray at around 3 p.m.
Two soldiers were also wounded in the battle but are now in stable condition, Ternio said in a press statement.
The body of the slain rebel was left behind by the NPAs and recovered by soldiers. The rebel’s identity and gender were not included in the report.
Also found was an M16 rifle, hand and rifle grenades, jungle packs and communist documents at the encounter site.
Report said villagers informed the soldiers who were stationed in the village about the presence of the rebels in the area and their alleged plan to conduct offensive action against the military.
Major General Arnulfo Marcelo Burgos Jr., Army’s 2nd ID commander, strongly condemned the NPA forces for the attack “which is a violation of their (NPA) reciprocal declaration of ceasefire”.
The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) has announced a ceasefire from March 26 to April 15 to allow the government to focus on its fight against the spread of the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in the country.
Incidentally, the NPA celebrates its 51st founding anniversary today (March 29).
Last week, President Rodrigo Duterte also declared a truce and ordered all government forces to cease their operations against communist rebels from March 19 to April 15 as Luzon was placed under “enhanced community quarantine” to combat COVID-19.
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