Rebel killed, 5 soldiers hurt in DavOr encounter-A A +A
Wednesday, October 2, 2013
A SUSPECTED member of the New People's Army (NPA) was killed, while five Army soldiers were wounded in an encounter in Barangay Aliwagwag in Cateel, Davao Oriental on Monday morning.
Captain Raul Villegas, spokesperson for the Army's 10th Infantry Division, identified the fatality as one Ryan, believed to be a commander of an NPA group operating in far-flung areas in Davao Oriental province.
One of the five wounded soldiers was identified as Sergeant Mario Torres of the Army's 67th Infantry Battalion. Villegas refused to name the four other soldiers, as their families are yet to be informed about the encounter.
Villegas said the Army troops were conducting security operations following the report about the presence of the NPA rebels in the area, when they encountered the rebels around 2 a.m.
"Actually, late in the evening of September 30, the 67th Infantry Battalion received the information from concerned citizens about the presence of the NPA in Cateel. They had feared that the rebels will conduct atrocities thus, we send the troops," Villegas said.
He added that the troops encountered some 25 NPA rebels in barangay Aliwagwag. The firefight lasted for about 30 minutes. He said the rebels detonated a landmine wounding five soldiers.
Villegas said the rebels withdrew at around 2:30 a.m. leaving behind the body of their commander. He added that the soldiers were able to recover an M16 rifle with the grenade launcher from the possession of alias Ryan.
As to the five wounded soldiers, Villegas said they were already brought to the nearest hospital in Cateel. Meanwhile, the body of the NPA rebel was brought to a funeral home in the same area.
Lt. General Ricardo Rainier G. Cruz III, commander of the Eastern Mindanao Command, on the other hand, thanked the communities for its coordination for they have prevented the atrocities of the NPA rebels in the area.
Cruz also encouraged the remaining armed groups to surrender with their firearms and avail the remunerations offered by the Armed Forces of the Philippines Guns for Peace Program.
Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on October 02, 2013.