DAVAO CITY, Philippines (Mindanao Examiner / Aug. 1, 2011) – At least a dozen communist rebels were believed killed in running gun battle with government troops in the southern Philippines, an army spokesman said Monday.
Major Eugenio Osias, of the 4th Infantry Division, said the fighting occurred over the weekend in the town of Loreto in Agusan del Sur province after troops caught up with New People’s Army rebels on a village there.
“We have reports that at least a dozen rebels were killed in the fighting and that they were buried in two separate places in Loreto town,” he told the Mindanao Examiner, adding one government militia was also slain in the battle that lasted more than 2 hours.
He said troops, backed by four air force helicopters, clashed with some 140 rebels who were suspected behind deadly attacks on military and police targets in the province last week.
“There is an ongoing operation in the province and troops are still tracking down the NPA rebels,” Osias said.
Two wounded rebels were also captured by police forces at a hospital in Loreto town on Monday and are being tightly guarded to prevent them from escaping.
On Sunday, a woman was wounded in a cross-fire after government soldiers and NPA rebels clashed in the southern city of Panabo after gunmen ambushed a military patrol in the village of Dalisay. The attack sparked a 30-minute gun battle.
The rebels are fighting the democratic government for the establishment of their own Maoist state in the country. (Mindanao Examiner)