THE Eastern Mindanao Command (Eastmincom) is upbeat in intensifying their Community Support Program (CSP) through the delivery of the basic government services and awareness campaign in identified red areas to prevent more recruitment of individuals and to further entice the rebels to surrender before authorities.

The newly-installed Eastmincom commander Lieutenant General Benjamin Madrigal said during Friday's Hermes Club press forum at the Waterfront Insular Hotel that their command will stregthen measures to prevent vulnerable individuals to be recruited by the rebels using their false promises.

"[We will] of course stop membership that is why we do the community support program, immersion in the communities para matigil yong pag join ng iba sa kanilang mga nire-recruit," Madrigal said.

He said that they have to balance their efforts. They couldn't just focus on offensive operation side while recruitment on the ground is continuously conducted. Thus, they will carry out the same operations to stop the recruitment operations of rebels.

"Ang barangay immersion ang dapat nating gawin at pagtoonan ito ng pansin so that we will finally prevent others to be recruited," he said.

They are also keen on stopping the extortion activities of the New People's Army (NPA) against mining companies, transportation, plantations, agribusiness and individuals who serve as their resource generation to continue with their operation.

"Alam naman natin na ang bumubuhay diyan ay pera. The resources na ginagamit nila na pambili ng armas, pang supporta sa pamilya nong kanilang sumasapi or SUPAMIL," he said.

According to reports, every year, the NPA collects P1.5 billion extortion money and the big chunk of it come from mining companies.

Earlier, President Rodrigo Duterte threatened these mining companies to stop giving in to the NPA's extortion demands, otherwise, they will facee closure.

Meanwhile, Madrigal said that they fully support the recent pronouncement of the President tagging these communist groups as "terrorists", citing that their violent actions no longer conform to the principles and ideology they stand for way back then.

"In the first place what do you call the burning equipment, pagsira ng mga plantation and what do you call killing innocent people other than terrorist?," Madrigal said.

The Office of the Presidential Peace Adviser on Peace Process (Oppap), for its part, said they will continue doing their mandate in accordance to the mandate of the national leadership.

"Dito, we have step up our security operations to ensure that the enemy will not be able to conduct terror activity to challenge the national government," he said.