TROOPS recovered the body of a suspected member of the New People’s Army (NPA) as well as landmines following an encounter in Aroroy, Masbate, the military said Tuesday, June 29, 2021.
Lieutenant Colonel Siegfried Felipe Awichen, commander of the 2nd Infantry Battalion, identified the fatality as Roberto Emaas, also known as Obet.
His body found by the government troops at the back of Balete National High School.
“Emaas was trying to flee together with other wounded members of CTG (communist terrorist group) but was left behind by his comrades and eventually died,” Awichen said.
"Emaas has long been terrorizing the residents of Barangay Balete and neighboring areas. He also extorts (from) small-scale miners, businessmen and the local populace to finance the unlawful activities of the CTG," he added.
Awichen said Emaas and other NPA rebels clashed with police and military personnel in Barangay Balete at around 5:30 p.m. of June 28, 2021.
Troops seized two anti-personnel mines and one bandolier with two magazines loaded with ammunition after a 15-minute gunfight.
Colonel Aldwine Almase, brigade commander of 903rd Infantry Brigade, said that the capture of anti-personnel mines only proves the communist group’s continuous manufacture of explosives in violation of the International Humanitarian Law (IHL).
The NPA earlier took full responsibility for the explosion of an improvised explosive device (IED) that killed football player Kieth Absalon and his cousin Nolven, also in Masbate. (Third Anne Peralta-Malonzo / SunStar Philippines)