Photo shows the recovered explosive devices and personal items from the New People's Army following a clash with governemnt troopers in Baguio District, Davao City. (Photo courtesy of the Eastmincom PIO)
DAVAO CITY – Government troops clashed with an undetermined number of communist insurgents in Barangay Tambobong, Baguio District here on Friday.
The firefight came a day after President Rodrigo Duterte terminated the peace negotiations between the government and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP).
Lt. Col Oscar Partuza, commander of the Army’s 3rd Infantry Battalion, said the encounter took place while the troops were validating information that NPA members were in the area.
Partuza said the five-minute firefight resulted in the death of an NPA rebel, whose identity remains unknown as of this posting, as well as the recovery of an M16 rifle and a cal. 45 pistol.
Lt. Col. Ezra Balagtey, spokesperson of the Eastern Mindanao Command (Eastmincom), said the Davao City encounter occurred after soldiers also engaged the rebels in at least two firefights in Barangay Anomar, Surigao City, and in Barangay Lower Olave, Buenavista, Agusan del Norte, on Thursday.
In the three incidents, Balagtey said no government trooper was reported wounded or killed.
Lt. General Felimon Santos Jr., Eastmincom commander, said government troops will sustain security operations to protect the communities and prevent the NPA from conducting harassments.
"While we are facilitating the resolution of issues and concern of our communities...let us sustain our security operations and not allow them to continue with their anti-development and anti-people terroristic act and plan as openly announced by Joma Sison to conduct attacks against our troops and communities and establishments," Santos Jr. said in his directive to the Army units under Eastmincom.
The Communist Party of the Philippines and the NPA have been listed as communist terrorist groups by the US and the European Union. (PNA)