Wednesday, November 18, 2009

NPA rebels kill 2 army militias; attack military detachment in Mindanao

DAVAO CITY, Philippines (Mindanao Examiner / November 18, 2009) – Communist insurgents shot dead two pro-government militias in a daring attack near a military post in the southern Filipino city of Davao.

Officials said New People’s Army rebels shot the militias as they were buying rice Tuesday afternoon at a cooperative store in Barakatan village in Toril District, killing one them of instantly. The other, although wounded, ran toward an army detachment but also died later.

The rebels also attacked the military post before retreating to the hinterlands. There were no reports of casualties in the attack on the detachment.

The killing came days after Major General Carlos Holganza assumed as the new commander of the Army’s 10th Infantry Division in Davao City. He replaced Major General Reynaldo Mapagu who was reassigned in Manila last week.

Holganza condemned the killings of the two militias, who were under the 72nd Infantry Battalion. He said the two men were unarmed at the time of the attack.

“This cowardly and inhuman act of these terrorists shows their total disregard and disrespect to the most basic tenets of International Humanitarian Law. The Civilian Armed Forces Geographical Unit members were unarmed and merely buying food.”

“These terrorists are repeatedly doing this by indiscriminately slaughtering unarmed soldiers and even innocent civilians. They are loosing the people and loosing grounds and are resorting to unparalleled violence to terrorize the people to force them to go back to their callous side. The heartless acts of these terrorists only reflect the brutality and true nature of their godless organization.” Holganza said.

A regional army spokesman, Captain Emmanuel Garcia, branded the attacks as desperate, merciless and coward and tagged the NPA’s Local Terrorist Front-53 and 54 led by Bobet and by alias Jasmin as behind the killings.

“The killing of the two Cafgu members is the latest of a string of murders perpetrated by local terrorists in Davao City victimizing unarmed civilians and unwary government troops,” he said.

The NPA is fighting for decades for the establishment of a Maoist state in the country. The rebels broke off peace talks with Manila after accusing President Gloria Arroyo of failing to honor agreements that would eventually free thousands of political prisoners and stop extrajudicial killings of activists. (Mindanao Examiner)

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