TROOPS belonging to the Eastern Mindanao Command (Eastmincom) are looking for suspected members of the New People's Army (NPA) who left 44 landmines at Sitio Mampait in Barangay Mansanitas, Agusan del Sur.

Eastmincom Public Information Officer Captain Alberto Caber said aside from the 44 landmines, the 39th Infantry Brigade also recovered from the area eight sacks of PVC pipes, batteries, detonating cord and improvised firing device around 8:30 a.m. Sunday.

Lieutenant General Ricardo Rainier G. Cruz, Eastmincom commander, said such landmines could be dangerous if they weren’t found.

"According to a rebel returnee, landmines are made not only for the government troops, but also to distract or even kill civilians. I commended the residents at Sitio Mampait in coordination with the troops, because we were able to seize these things," Cruz said.

Caber said the residents requested for military security patrols due to the presence of unidentified armed men roaming at Sitio Mampait in Barangay Mansanitas. He added the troops immediately conducted security operation.

Cruz said the NPA continues to violate the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law, adding that if the rebels are sincere about peace, they must stop manufacturing landmines as these kill people. (ICT)