THE continuous pursuit of the country’s Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) against rebel groups and personalities operating in the Cordillera region have set a downtrend in the recruitment of the New People’s Army (NPA).
This was how Police Regional Office-Cordillera regional director Chief Superintendent Elmo Francis Sarona describes the ongoing efforts of the government to rid the region of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP)-NPA.
“With the relentless pursuit of the AFP who is the primary agency tasked to address the internal security operations in the region, the AFP has been successful in driving them away,” Sarona said.
The Cordillera Police Regional Office top cop explained while they have been receiving reports of non-violent incidents such as the presence of small groups scattered over four provinces in the Cordillera, their recruitment process is seen by the AFP and PNP to be failing.
PRO-COR and the AFP have listed the provinces of Kalinga, Abra, Mountain Province and Ifugao to be the areas of operation of the CPP-NPA.
“There have been reports of recruitment and they are trying to regain a foothold on their mass base in other areas but I believe that they have not been successful due to the continuous efforts of the AFP,” Sarona added.
Earlier, Apayao Governor Elias Bulut Jr. explained the maintenance of its peace advocacy under the internal insurgency campaign to be the essential part of why the activities of the rebel group in the province have gone down.
Published in the SunStar Baguio newspaper on September 19, 2017.
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