Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Troops clashed with NPA; seized IED in Southern Philippines

DAVAO CITY, Philippines (Mindanao Examiner / October 6, 2009) – Government soldiers seized an improvised explosive device after a firefight with communist rebels in the southern Philippines, army officials told the Mindanao Examiner on Tuesday.

Officials said the fighting broke out in the village of Matupi in the town of San Fernando in Bukidnon province after army forces intercepted a band of rebels on Monday.

There were no reports of casualties from both sides, but officials said soldiers have seized the explosive, including medical kits and backpacks left behind by New People’s Army rebels.

“Government troops recovered an improvised explosive devise in an encounter with local NPA terrorists,” said Lieutenant Colonel Adriano Perez, commander of the Army’s 60th Infantry Battalion.

He said villages tipped off the military about the presence of rebels and eventually troops caught up with the gunmen and a firefight ensued.

Last week, rebel forces killed four government soldiers in a roadside bombing in Agusan del Sur’s Trento town. The rebels also seized an M16 rifle from the slain soldiers, said Roel Agustin II, a spokesman for the NPA’s Conrado Heredia Command.

The NPA is fighting for decades for the establishment of a Maoist state in the country. (Mindanao Examiner)

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