From the Philippine Information Agency (Jun 17, 2020): AFP, PNP beef up troops in EV (By Rodrigo S. Victoria)
NAVAL, Biliran, June 17 (PIA) -- Top officials of the Philippine Army (PA) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) in Eastern Visayas said more troops will be deployed in the region.
Major General Pio Diñoso, commander of the 8th Infantry Division, Philippine Army, and Police Brig. Gen. Bernabe M. Balba, PNP-8 Regional Director, disclosed the information during the Independence Day episode of the PIA Panindugan Virtual Press Conference hosted by PIA 8 Regional Director Olive P. Tiu.
Diñoso said the higher headquarters sent back the elements of the 19th IB to the region after four years of assignment in North Cotabato.
“Ang inyong Philippine Army, dahil sa magandang ipinapakita ka-partner ang Task Force ELCAC, ibinalik sa atin from Mindanao ang 19th Infantry Battalion na naka-base sa North Cotabato for four years. Ngayon, pinayagan din nila tayo mag-organize pa ng isang Infantry Battalion, ito ‘yong 52nd Infantry Battalion,” Diñoso said.
He added that the two additional battalion in Region 8 is a validation that the army is performing well in the region.
"The 19th IB, which is composed of 400-500 personnel, will be assigned in San Roque and Gandara-Matuginao areas while the 52nd IB in Eastern Samar," the 8ID chief said.
The Army chief in the region said they also deployed air forces, firepower and surveillance assets as investment of AFP.
These additional battalions, these additional assets will help deter the terrorists’ activities in the region, he added.
With these developments, Diñoso urged the rebels to change their lives by returning to the fold of the law.
On the other hand, Balba said the PNP in the region will be strengthened by some 300 personnel of the Special Action Force (SAF).
"The additional SAF personnel will join and help the PNP in the Eastern Visayas region in the maintenance of peace and order," Balba said.
He further said SAF personnel are expected to help in carrying out other tasks rendered by the PNP personnel in the region. (ldl/rsv/PIA Biliran)