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1 dead NPA, 3 high-powered rifles found at clash site

A NEW People’s Army (NPA) member was killed and three high-powered firearms were recovered when 23rd Infantry Battalion troops clashed with guerillas in Sitio Calaitan, Barangay Simbalan, Buenavista, Agusan del Norte on Jan. 16.

The military has yet to identify the slain rebel but he was reportedly a member of Sub Regional Command (SRC )3, North Central Mindanao Regional Committee (NCMRC), who was left to die by his comrades.

Second Lieutenant Paoula Andrea Ledesma, the civil-military operations (CMO) officer, said 23IB troops under commanding officer Lt. Col. Jeffrey P Balingao went to verify the information relayed by residents regarding the presence of the NPA rebels. 

 The firefight lasted for about 10 minutes before the communists scampered in different directions. They left behind the wounded rebel, along with two M16 rifles, a .30 caliber M1 Carbine, personal belongings, and subversive documents. 

“This operation is part of our relentless effort to end the local communist armed conflict in our Area of Operation. As we gain significant results against these terrorist NPAs, we will continue with our pursuit operations against the fleeing terrorists. With the continuous support of the residents in the area, I am confident that our troops can contain them from conducting further terroristic activities and finally pin them down,” Balingao said. 

Meanwhile, Brigadier General Adonis Ariel G. Orio, commander of the 402nd (Stingers) Infantry Brigade, also credited NPA surrenderees for working closely with the government in pinning down their former comrades. 

“This is how sincere we are in our effort to end this communist-driven local insurgency. As long as the people of Agusan del Norte continue to support us in all our peace initiatives, these accomplishments are always possible. Let us altogether end this menace in our society,” Brig. Orio said.


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