2 soldiers die, 1 hurt in Himamaylan clash-A A +A
Saturday, July 19, 2014
TWO troopers of the Philippine Army were killed while another was wounded during an encounter with suspected New People’s Army (NPA) rebels Thursday afternoon in Barangay Buenavista, Himamaylan City, Negros Occidental.
Seventeen members of the Bayanihan Team of the 47th Infantry Battalion clashed with about 30 rebels for about 30 minutes in the remote Sitio Madaja.
The slain soldiers were identified as Corporal Napoleon Supresencia and Private First Class (PFC) Henry Lumio Jr.
PFC Leland Sucatre was wounded in his back, but is already in stable condition.
Lt. Col. Ariel Reyes, commanding officer of 47th IB, said his troops were engaging in peace and development activities when they encountered the rebels believed to be members of the NPA’s Central Negros Front Komiteng Rehiyonal-Negros.
“Our troops are there to help the local government assist the people in identifying the issues in their community so that these can be resolved and their lives will improve,” Reyes said.
It was not determined yet if the rebels also suffered casualties. Two M16 assault rifles and bandoleers of ammunition were carted away by the rebels.
Col. Jon Aying, 303rd Infantry Brigade commander, said more troops have been deployed in the area to track down the rebels.
Maj. Gen. Aurelio Baladad, commander of the 3rd Infantry Division, said the Army expresses its deepest sympathies to the families of the slain soldiers.
“They offered their lives for the sake of the people. They will always be remembered as true heroes and advocates of peace,” Baladad said.
He scored the CPP-NPA for disrupting the efforts of the Army and the local government in bringing peace and development and government services to the people in the hinterlands of Negros. (NLG with reports from PNA)
Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on July 19, 2014.