Saturday, March 27, 2010

Maoist rebels raid Philippine village

KIDAPAWAN, Philippines (Mindanao Examiner / Mar. 27, 2010) – Communist rebels took responsibility Saturday for the raid on a southern Philippine village that killed a government militia and wounded two more.

The New People’s Army said rebels seized 35 assorted high powered weapons in the attack Friday afternoon on the village of Luz in North Cotabato’s Mlang town.

“The Valentin Palamine Regional Operations Command commends the Red fighters of Front 72 for their daring attack on the Cafgu detachment of Luz Village, Mlang, North Cotabato which garnered for the people’s war thirty five high powered rifles and other military paraphernalia,” a rebel spokesman Dencio Madrigal said.

Cafgu refers to Civilian Armed Forces Geographical Unit, a paramilitary group maintained by the military to guard villages against rebel attacks.

He said the attack lasted for about 14 minutes. “It was launched in the very heart of Vice Governor Manny Piñol’s stronghold, just a few kilometers away from the 57th Infantry Battalion headquarters. A Cafgu who resisted the attack was killed, while those who surrendered were left in peace,” Madrigal said.

“We would also like to express our most heartfelt thanks to the masses and allies of Mlang and other areas of North Cotabato who secretly and ably assisted us in our tactical offensive right under the nose of Manny Piñol whose notoriety as a despotic bureaucrat is known far and wide. Indeed, nothing is impossible for the NPA because the people support them wholeheartedly,” he added.

The Philippine Army said more than 50 rebels took part in the attack. The raiders, who arrived in a truck, were clad in black and camouflage uniforms while some disguised as farmers. They opened fired on the militias and overran the army detachment and torched six bunkers.

Colonel Benjamin Hao, a spokesman for the Army’s 6th Infantry Division, said troops were pursuing the attackers. He said the truck used by rebels had been recovered by soldiers in Tulunan town where the raiders abandoned the vehicle.
“We will not stop until they are captured,” he said.

The NPA is the armed wing of the Communist Party of the Philippines which is fighting for decades for the establishment of a Maoist state in the country.

Government peace talks with rebels collapsed in 2004 after communist negotiators accused President Gloria Arroyo of reneging on several humanitarian agreements, among them the release of all political detainees in the country and to put a stop on extrajudicial killings of activists opposed to Arroyo’s rule. (Mindanao Examiner)

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