Woman, 2 minors among 6 NPA rebels captured after battle with gov’t troops
BACOLOD CITY – Six suspected communist rebels – among them a woman and two minors – were captured following an encounter with government troopers in Mabinay town, Negros Oriental province, on Saturday.
Seized from the suspects were four M16 assault rifles with ab M203 grenade launcher, and two M4 assault rifles, assorted military war materials, assorted food and subversive documents, as well as some explosives.
Lt. Col. Darrel Banes, 62nd Infantry Battalion commanding officer, said his troops went to Sitio Tumonon, Barangay Luyang, Mabinay, Negros Oriental on Saturday to check on reports that about 20 NPA rebels were engaged in extortion activities.
They were met by gunfire, which prompted the soldiers to fire back.
The battle lasted for about 45 minutes, ending in the capture of six NPA fighters.
Banes declined to identify the woman, but he said she was a graduate of Mass Communications at the University of the Philippines-Cebu.
Lawyer Liza Corro, UP Cebu’s chancellor, confirmed in an official statement that the arrested woman was a graduate of the university.
We have no information about her current involvements. But I believe she is entitled to due process and is considered innocent until proven otherwise,” Corro said.
Banes said the recruitment of minors to join the armed struggle was a “clear manifestation of gross violation” on the Special Protection of Children Against Abuse, Exploitation and Discrimination Act.
Before the encounter at 2 a.m. on Saturday, Capt. Eduardo Precioso, 3rd Infantry Division spokesman, said that two rebel camps, were discovered abandoned last week in Barangay Samac, also in Mabinay, and Barangay Panciao in Manjuyod, Negros Oriental.
Also last week, a farm tractor in La Castelana, Negros Occidental and a cargo truck in Canlaon City, Negros Oriental, were separately burned by rebels, which was later owned up by the NPA Leonardo Panaligan Command in central Negros. /atm
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