CATBALOGAN CITY -- Suspected members of the New People’s Army (NPA) detonated an improvised explosive device Wednesday morning in Jiabong town in Samar province.
Two of the policemen, Police Officer 1 Roan Ralph Sabanal and Police Officer 1 John Cervantes, onboard a patrol car were injured and their vehicle was damaged. They were rushed to the nearest hospital for medical attention.
Sketchy reports said that the police car was bombed around 11:40 a.m. of July 26 in the vicinity of Barangay Jia-an while it was headed for Catarman, Northern Samar.
It was not clear if a gunfight ensued after the explosion.
The police responders believe that the perpetrators are members of the NPA.
Hot pursuit operations against the perpetrators are underway.
On Tuesday, July 25, an IED was also detonated along the road of Barangay San Jorge in Las Navas, Northern Samar, resulting in the death of one civilian.
The civilian's body was found in the drivers’ seat of a Hilux vehicle. The damaged car was covered by a thick of soil and debris.
Also recently, elements of the 52nd Infantry Battalion recovered some 19 anti-personnel IEDs in Barangay Guirang, Basey, Samar.
Officials of the Philippine Army’s 8th Infantry Division based in Barangay Maulong, Catbalogan City, condemned the rebels' successive attacks, saying such action “is a sign of utter disrespect to the dignity of human life.”
“It is also a clear violation to the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law,” the military said.
Notably, the attacks on government forces started after President Rodrigo Duterte announced last week the cancellation of peace talks between the government and the communists.
Duterte vowed to deal with the NPAs after the Marawi crisis. (SunStar Philippines)