NPA in Bukidnon claims taking 2 soldiers as ‘prisoners of war’
DAVAO CITY, Philippines – Communist rebels on Wednesday claimed to have seized two soldiers in Impasug-ong, Bukidnon, and said they were holding them as “prisoners of war.”
The military has not responded to Inquirer queries on the claim.
Allan Juanito, spokesperson of the New People’s Army in North Central Mindanao, said the two soldiers were seized Friday as they were buying supplies in the market.
He identified them as Privates Marnel Cinches, 23, and Jerrel Yorong, 28, of the 8th Infantry Battalion who were assigned to Impasug-ong’s Barangay Buntungon.
“Recovered from their possession were a .45-caliber pistol and M203 and M16 ammunition,” Juanito said.
He said the NPA custodial unit currently holding the soldiers was investigating the two soldiers.
“While an investigation is being done to know if they are facing cases or complaints from the people, they are attended to by an NPA custodial unit in accordance to the protocols and laws of war as prisoners of war,” Juanito said.
The rebel spokesperson said the NPA had also sent messages to the families of the captured soldiers, assuring them that they were safe.
“We also wanted to tell their families and friends that both are in good health and are safe from danger,” Juanito said.
The NPA has been active in Bukidnon and other parts of Mindanao in recent months.
Last month, a group of NPA rebel sharpshooters killed Impasug-ong Mayor Mario Okinlay for allegedly participating in “anti-people and counterrevolutionary” activities.
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