Monday, April 30, 2018

US Declares Former Philippine Teacher a Global Terrorist

From BenarNews (Apr 30): US Declares Former Philippine Teacher a Global Terrorist

The United States on Monday declared a former Filipina teacher, who allegedly facilitated the transfer of funds to the slain leader of the Islamic State (IS) in the Philippines and helped Indonesian militants acquire firearms, as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist.

Myrna Mabanza (alias Myrna Ajijul Mabanza), a resident of the southern Philippine province of Basilan, was involved in the January 2016 transfer of $107,000 to Isnilon Hapilon, the leader of the Marawi siege, the U.S. Department of the Treasury said in a news release. The source of the funding was not included in the news release.

Hapilon, the acknowledged leader of IS in the Philippines, launched the Marawi siege with other pro-IS militants in May 2017.

The siege ended in October after security forces killed Hapilon in five months of vicious gun battles that led to the deaths of 1,200 people, mostly militants.

“As a result of today’s designation, all property and interests in property of Mabanza subject to U.S. jurisdiction are blocked, and U.S. persons are generally prohibited from engaging in transactions with her,” the treasury department said.

Sigal Mandelker, the treasury’s undersecretary for terrorism and financial intelligence, said Mabanza also served as “an intermediary between extremist groups in Southeast Asia that are recruiting, training, and deploying radical terrorists.”

“The United States continues to map and disrupt ISIS financing networks in Southeast Asia and is resolved to cut their access to the international financial system,” Mandelker said, using another acronym for IS.

Mabanza was arrested and detained during an anti-drug raid on Sept. 7, 2016, in the southern city of Zamboanga, where she worked as a public school teacher, according to a Philippine police news release two years ago. Police seized three small packets of meth from her during the raid.

It was not immediately clear if Mabanza remained in detention, but the treasury department said that in February 2016, she also served as an intermediary between Hapilon and IS elements in Syria.

“In March 2016, Mabanza coordinated another transfer of funds with Hapilon,” the treasury’s statement said, adding that during the same month a senior ISIS official in Syria planned to send financial support to Hapilon’s group through Mabanza. It was not immediately clear if that transaction went through.

In April 2016, Mabanza helped facilitate the travel of a Jamaah Ansharut Daulah (JAD) representative who traveled from Indonesia to the Philippines, according to the department’s release, which did not identify the militant.

“Mabanza accompanied the JAD representative to Basilan, Philippines to meet Hapilon,” it said.

The JAD representative traveled to the Philippines, purchased firearms for IS-aligned militants in Indonesia and set up training courses for Indonesian militants in the southern Philippines where they received firearms training in pro-IS guerrilla camps and learned basic bomb-making techniques, the statement said.

Mabanza passed the licensing test for elementary school teachers in November 2012, according to the Manila-based Professional Regulation Commission.

JAD, which was formed in 2015, is composed of almost two dozen Indonesian extremist groups that had pledged allegiance to IS leader Abu Bakr Al Baghdadi. The U.S. Department of State designated JAD as a Specially Designated Terror Group on Jan. 10, 2017.

Basilan youth leaders unite against violent extremism

From CNN Philippines (May 1): Basilan youth leaders unite against violent extremism

[Video report]

The spread of radical Islamist ideas is one of the biggest challenges the military has to deal with in Mindanao. This has contributed to the rise of terror groups like the Abu Sayyaf and their subsequent unlawful, violent activities. That's why in Basilan, youth leaders are uniting to prevent the young ones from being influenced and recruited.

Treasury sanctions ISIS facilitator based in the Philippines

From FDD's Long War Journal (Apr 30): Treasury sanctions ISIS facilitator based in the Philippines (by Thomas Jocelyn)

The Treasury Department announced today that it has added Myrna Mabanza, an Islamic State (ISIS) facilitator based in the Philippines, to the US government’s list of designated terrorists.

Treasury identifies Mabanza as a woman in her mid-20s who has worked with some of the Islamic State’s most senior personnel in Southeast Asia. She has not only helped connect the Islamic State’s arms in the Philippines and Indonesia, but has also served as an “intermediary” to jihadists in Syria.

Treasury’s announcement contains several details concerning Mabanza’s role in the Islamic State’s global network.

She worked with Isnilon Hapilon, the former Abu Sayyaf leader who led Abu Bakr al Baghdadi’s loyalists in the Philippines before his demise last year.

“In January 2016,” the US government says, “Mabanza was involved in the transfer of up to $107,000 with then-ISIS-P [Islamic State-Philippines] leader Isnilon Hapilon.” Hapilon, who was reportedly killed in Marawi in late 2017, “also instructed Mabanza to deliver money to an ISIS-P member.”

In Feb. 2016, Mabanza “served as an intermediary between Hapilon and ISIS elements in Syria.” Treasury does not explain what Mabanza’s liaison role entailed. But the following month, in Mar. 2016, she “coordinated another transfer of funds with Hapilon” and “a senior ISIS official in Syria planned to send financial support to” the Islamic State in the Philippines “through Mabanza.”

Then, in Apr. 2016, Mabanza “helped facilitate the travel of a Jamaah Ansharut Daulah (JAD) representative who traveled from Indonesia to the Philippines.”

Mabanza “accompanied” a “JAD representative to Basilan, Philippines to meet Hapilon,” according to Treasury. The JAD member “traveled to the Philippines to purchase arms for ISIS-aligned forces in Indonesia and to set up training courses for pro-ISIS recruits from Indonesia with” the Islamic State’s arm in the Philippines. Hapilon “agreed to the plan” and Indonesian “recruits…were trained in firearm use and basic bomb-making.”

JAD announced its allegiance to Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi in 2015. It is a consortium of extremist groups that has provided the Islamic State with a pool of talent from which it can recruit. One of the so-called caliphate’s most prolific remote-controlled plotters, Bahrun Naim, relied on JAD members to carry out his plans. For example, JAD provided the muscle for Naim’s Jan. 14, 2016, attack in Jakarta. [For more, see FDD’s Long War Journal report, Indonesian authorities hunt Islamic State operative’s cyber recruits.]

JAD was designated as a terrorist organization by the State Department in Jan. 2017. The ISIS arm in the Philippines was added to the designation list in Feb. 2018.

Treasury’s announcement highlights the fact that there has been at least some degree of connectivity between the various groups affiliated with the Islamic State throughout Southeast Asia, as well as with the mother organization in Syria. This is not surprising as counterterrorism officials throughout the region — in Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, and Singapore — have been forced to disrupt these ties. In the summer of 2017, Australian authorities, with help from Israeli intelligence, also thwarted a plot that was tied back to Islamic State members in Syria.

“Mabanza has facilitated substantial financial activity on behalf of senior ISIS-Philippines leadership and has been an intermediary between extremist groups in Southeast Asia that are recruiting, training, and deploying radical terrorists,” Sigal Mandelker, the Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence, said in today’s announcement. “The United States continues to map and disrupt ISIS financing networks in Southeast Asia and is resolved to cut their access to the international financial system.”

[Thomas Joscelyn is a Senior Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and the Senior Editor for FDD's Long War Journal.]

Rebels surrender in Mountain Province

From the Sun Star-Baguio (Apr 30): Rebels surrender in Mountain Province

THREE suspected members of the New People’s Army, including a 16-year-old girl, and 17 supporters surrendered in Mountain Province recently.

The girl, a Grade 10 student from Bontoc, surrendered to officials of the Philippine Army and the Bontoc Police while the two other alleged rebels gave up their arms on April 26 upon the prodding of Paracelis Municipal Police Station (MPS), Provincial Mobile Force Coy, Police Regional Office -Cordillera, Alpha Coy of the 54th IB, PA, and Franklin Tallawec of the Cordillera Bodong Association (CBA).

Rogelio Balanon Del Rosario, alias “Ka Eric”, was a squad leader while Benny Lumidap Tuginay, alias “Ka Manny”, was a member of the “Frank Guerrila Unit” based in Gonzaga, Cagayan. The unit operates in Cagayan and nearby areas.

The girl was a member of the Leonardo Pacsi command for the last three years.

Upon her surrender, she turned over subversive documents, three M-16 armalite rifles, four cellular phones, cash and various writing paraphernalia.

Authorities brought her to the hospital after she allegedly went into shock.

The 17 Militiang Bayan supporters of the NPA, armed wing of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP), also declared their support to the government’s peace initiatives.

The two former rebels turned over a carbine rifle with no serial number, two magazines for carbine rifle, 10 ammunitions for carbine, an M16 rifle with defaced serial number, a short metal magazine for M16, and five ammunitions for M16 which are now under the custody of Paracelis MPS.

Chief Superintendent Edward Carranza, Police Regional Office director for the Cordillera Administrative Region, assured that the Philippine National Police (PNP) will help them return to society.

"We encourage other members and supporters of the NPA to lay down their arms and return to the mainstream society. We extend our gratitude to the different stakeholders, and community for their unwavering support to our troops which is a clear indication that more people are embracing the path to peace, and that peace in the countryside and far flung communities will cause progress and development," Carranza said.

NPA claims responsibility for Davao Oriental attacks

From the Sun Star-Cagayan de Oro (Apr 30): NPA claims responsibility for Davao Oriental attacks

THE New People's Army (NPA) admitted that its members were responsible in the recent series of attacks in some areas in Davao Oriental province.

Rigoberto Sanchez, spokesperson of the Regional Operation Command, NPA in Southern Mindanao, said in a statement that their members under the 6th Pulang Bagani Company ambushed a platoon of the Army’s 28th Infantry Battalion in Purok Kinawasan, Barangay San Isidro in Lupon, Davao Oriental on April 26.

Sanchez said that for two hours after the ambush, the soldiers allegedly carried out the first round of artillery strike that destroyed houses and farms in San Isidro and Likop in adjacent Mati City. Some 50 families were forced to evacuate.

The Comval-Davao Gulf Sub-Regional Command, meanwhile, launched on April 28 an action against the Army’s 28th Infantry Battalion and 72nd Infantry Battalion in Barangay Marayag in Lupon town, and mounted a mobile checkpoint for several hours along the Compostela Valley-Davao Oriental national highway.

Soldier killed, another wounded in Bukidnon ambush

From the Manila Times (May 1): Soldier killed, another wounded in Bukidnon ambush

An Army soldier was killed while an officer was wounded after they were waylaid by communist insurgents in an outskirt village in Quezon, Bukidnon, a police report said on Tuesday.

The fatality was identified as Private First Class Joehan C. Macalong while the wounded was Lt. Kevin G. Abad, both from the Army’s 88th Infantry Battalion, Inspector Jiselle Longakit, spokesperson of the Bukidnon Police Command said.

The soldiers were on board a motorcycle and were on their way to “Poblacion” Quezon in Bukidnon when the suspects fired at them in Sto. Domingo, in Lumantao, Quezon.

Macalong was killed on the spot while Abad managed to escape and seek assistance from residents who brought him to a hospital for treatment, Longakit said.

She said that combined military and police forces were immediately dispatched to the area to conduct hot pursuit operations on the attackers believed to be members of the New People’s Army (NPA).

In a statement, Lt. Col. Randy O. Remonte, commanding officer of the Army’s 88IB, said that the military “will seek justice for the families of the aggrieved soldiers.”

He said the soldiers were members of the 88IB’s community support program security team who were deployed to Sto. Domingo in Lumintao, Quezon, Bukidnon to assist residents in processing various livelihood programs for the community.

Remonte said that the inconsiderate attack on the soldiers angered him as he mourned with the families of the slain soldier.

NPA members kill CAFGU member in Negros Oriental ambush

From GMA News (Apr 29): NPA members kill CAFGU member in Negros Oriental ambush

A member of the Philippine Army's Citizen Armed Force Geographical Unit (CAFGU) was shot dead after he was ambushed by suspected New People's Army (NPA) rebels Saturday in Santa Catalina, Negros Oriental.

The victim was identified as Bobby Sarino, 46, a member of the CAFGU's Cogon Patrol Base in southern Negros Oriental.

The Santa Catalina Police said Sarino was on his way home in Sitio Bacnet in Barangay Nagbinlod at around 6 a.m. when he was waylaid by four suspected NPA members.

Police Officer 1 Elizer Enrique said Sarino was died due to six gunshot wounds in the head and body.

Meanwhile, Sarino's fellow CAFGU members and troops from the Army's 15th Infantry Battalion clashed with at least 30 NPA members while pursuing his attackers at around 1 p.m.

Lieutenant Colonel Patricio Tomales, commanding officer of the 15th Infantry Battalion, told GMA News Online in a phone interview that the some minors and two women were among the NPA members encountered by the troops.

The clash lasted for at least 20 minutes.

The ambush happened as peace talks between the Philippine government and the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) were set to resume.

Due to the strong presence of NPA rebels in the province, Police Regional Office-7 (PRO-7) director Chief Superintendent Robert Quenery has named Negros Oriental a "priority province" for the May 14 Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) elections.

The PRO-7 will closely monitor Negros Oriental next month, as it is only the province in Central Visayas with many recent insurgency-related incidents, Negros Oriental Police chief Senior Superintendent Edwin Portento previously told reporters.

Santa Catalina has some barangays initially listed as poll hot spots. The number of poll hot spots in the province range from 62 to 79.

CPP/NPA-Southern Mindanao: Mercenary 28th IB hit in series of NPA offensives in Davao Oriental, 1 rifle seized

New People's Army (NPA)-Southern Mindanao propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (Apr 29): Mercenary 28th IB hit in series of NPA offensives in Davao Oriental, 1 rifle seized

Rigoberto F. Sanchez, Spokesperson
NPA-Southern Mindanao

29 April 2018

Red fighters under the 6th Pulang Bagani Company of the New People’s Army ambushed a platoon of the 28th Infantry Battalion in Purok Kinawasan, Brgy. San Isidro in Lupon, Davao Oriental at around 3pm on April 26. A Remington Carbine M4 rifle with scope was seized during the offensive. The 28th IB forces were on foot patrol when Red fighters triggered a command-detonated explosive and engaged the troops in a firefight. One soldier was killed, while several others were wounded.The ambushed mercenary soldiers were part of the insidious civic-military operation forces deployed in Brgy. San Isidro since last year.

For two hours following the ambush, the 28th IB carried out first round of artillery strike, targeting the densely populated villages of San Isidro and Likop in adjacent Mati City and destroying houses and farms in its wake. The second round lasted more than three hours and until midnight. Some 50 families have been forced to evacuate.

Meanwhile yesterday, April 28, an NPA unit of the Comval-Davao Gulf Sub-Regional Command launched attritive action against the 28th IB and 72nd IB detachment in Brgy. Marayag as, almost simultaneously, another company of Red fighters mounted a mobile checkpoint for several hours at the Compostela Valley – Davao Oriental national highway in Lupon. The NPA’s mobile checkpoint was only several minutes away from the nearest regular checkpoint maintained by the 28th IB.

Since early last year, or even before Duterte’s declaration of martial law, the 28th IB has been terrorizing Brgy. San Isidro and its adjacent villages in Lupon town and Mati City, which comprise part of the tenement area of Chinese-owned mining companies Phil. Youbang Mining Corp., Dabawenyo Minerals Corp. and Phil. Jenshen International Mining Corp. Residents of the villages were subjected to “clearing
operations”—which cover the usual intimidation, red-baiting, forced surrender and periodic food blockade—to make way for the unimpeded environmentally-destructive operations of the mining companies. The three companies, securing Mineral Production Sharing Agreements (MPSA) to conduct their disastrous operations, are among DENR Sec. Roy Cimatu’s more favored large-scale foreign mining operators in the province.

The 28th IB is notorious for being hired armed goons of mining companies in Davao Oriental, handsomely employed to do the dirty work of driving away peasants and Lumad from their sources of livelihood and suppressing the masses’ resistance to mining operations. Early this year, a security outpost of 28th IB soldiers and private security goons guarding RAM Aggregates, Inc., a nickle-ore mining company, was overran by Red fighters in Banay-banay town.

The latest tactical offensive in Davao Oriental is also a slap on the face the province’s fascist bureaucrats Cong. Corazon Malanyaon and Gov. Nelson Dayanghirang and the AFP forces assigned in the area who have time and again declared the province “cleared and insurgency-free.” The latest in their pathetic barefaced lies is parading so-called surrenderers, more than 90% of whom were unarmed civilians who were threatened and herded to attend a “peace caravan.”

In February, the 28th IB churned out a hackneyed story of a supposed NPA surrenderer who claimed to be an officer of the provincial chapter of a progressive partylist. Failing to provide actual battle success and facing escalating resistance from the masses for its crimes and predisposition of being paid armed lackeys to capitalist interest, the 28th IB instead busies itself in weaving half-truths and bare lies with local warlord politicians like Malanyaon and Dayanghirang.

The AFP is poised to intensify the militarization in Davao Oriental in order to protect the reactionary provincial government’s planned “industrial park” which is sure to displace more peasants and Lumad, poison and devastate the environment and benefit the greed of local politicians, local compradors and foreign capitalists with the proposed construction of power plants, petrochemical and fertilizer factories and other such industries.

The NPA in Davao Oriental supports the growing resistance of the peasants and Lumad to protect their way of life and means of living. Red fighters are ready to give battle against the US-Duterte’s terroristic armed defense of the ruling class’ greed because, despite the AFP’s laughable claims and misrepresentations, the NPA in the region continues to enjoy the love and support of the masses for revolutionary armed struggle.

CPP/NPA-Kalinga: Duterte kontra-manggagawa, tuta ng mga kapitalista, pahirap sa masa!

New People's Army (NPA)-Kalinga propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (Apr 30): Duterte kontra-manggagawa, tuta ng mga kapitalista, pahirap sa masa!

Ka Tipon Gil-ayab, Spokesperson
NPA-Kalinga (Lejo Cawilan Command)

30 April 2018

Sa Mayo 1 ipinagbubunyi ng masang anakpawis ang Pandaigdigang Araw ng Paggawa, ngunit walang ibang aasahang pag-unlad ang sektor ng paggawa mula sa papet at pasistang rehimeng Duterte bagkus lalo pa nitong pag-iibayuhin ang paghihirap at pasanin ng sambayanang Pilipino. Mula ng maupo sa pwesto, ampaw na mga pangako at puro palipad-hangin lamang ang ginawa ni Duterte upang lumikha ng ilusyong may ginagawa itong hakbang upang iangat ang antas ng pamumuhay ng ordinaryong Pilipino. Maraming ipinangako ngunit lahat ng ito ay napako. Pinilit niya mang ikubli, lumitaw rin ang diktador-pasistang kulay nito na walang ibang pinagsisilbihan kung hindi ang interes nito at ng iilang naghaharing-uri.

Sa halip na tuparin ang pangako nitong wawakasan ang kontraktwalisasyon, naglabas ang rehimen ng ampaw at bogus na DO 174 na sa katunayan ay mas lalong nagpalala sa iskemang kontraktwalisasyon. Imbes na paboran nito ang mga manggagawa, lalo lamang nitong pinatindi ang pagsasamantala at pandarahas sa kanila ng mga kapitalista. Sinigurado ng DO 174 na mas ibayo pang maipagkakait ng mga kapitalista ang mga batayang karapatan ng mga manggagawa sa seguridad sa trabaho, nakabubuhay na pasahod, at ligtas at malusog na kalagayan sa paggawa. Sa ilalim ng rehimen ay umabot na sa 4.1 milyon ang bilang ng mga walang trabaho. Ito na ang pinakamasahol na bilang sa loob ng 20 taon. Ang masaklap dito, hindi rin masasabing maswerte ang mga kasalukuyang may trabaho dahil sa kabila ng di-makataong kalagayan sa paggawa ay limos lamang ang kasalukuyang P512 na minimum wage sa NCR. Talaga nga namang marapat na tawaging “libing” wage ito dahil wala pa ito sa kalahati ng kinakailangang halaga na P1,171 upang mabuhay ng disente ang isang pamilyang may anim na miyembro. Kung tutuusin hindi pa nga sapat ang P512 na minimum wage upang makakuha man lamang ng disenteng libing, paano pa kaya ang makapagpagamot ng may sakit o pagtugon sa mga emergency na kalagayan?

Kalunos-lunos na isiping ganito ang kalagayan ng manggagawang Pilipino na siyang tunay na pundasyon ng ekonomiya ng bansa habang patuloy na lumolobo ang yaman ng 40 na pinakamayamang pamilya sa bansa na siyang tunay na nakikinabang sa mga proyekto at utang ng rehimen mula sa iba’t ibang bansang pinaglakuan nito sa Pilipinas. Masaklap pa rito, wala na ngang aasahan ang mamamayang Pilipino sa rehimen ay dinagdagan pa nito ang pasanin ng masa sa pagsagasa sa kanila ng TRAIN law na lalong maglulugmok sa kanila sa kahirapan. Sa pamamagitan ng TRAIN ay lalong sisirit ang presyo ng mga batayang produkto at lalong bababa ang kakayahan ng masang-anakpawis na makamit ang kanilang mga batayang-pangangailangan sa araw-araw.

Partikular sa rehiyon, ang P250 na minimum wage para ng CAR ay hindi kailanman matatawag na nakabubuhay na pasahod at malayong- malayo sa itinakdang living wage at kahit na sa minimum wage sa NCR. Hindi kailanman matutustusan ng limos na halaga na ito ang pagkain, edukasyon, kalusugan at iba pang batayang serbisyong kinakailangan ng tao upang mabuhay ng disente. Itinutulak ng rehimen na kumapit sa patalim ang mga mamamayan dahil na rin sa kainutilan nitong magbigay ng disenteng ikabubuhay. Nais pang ikubli ng rehimen ang patuloy na paglawak ng disempleyo sa bansa sa pagmamalaking marami itong nakuhang mga pamumuhunan mula sa paglalako nito sa likas-yaman ng bansa na di umano ay lilikha ng libo-libong trabaho para sa mga mamamayang Pilipino. Halimbawa sa Kalinga, bumubuhos ngayon ang napakaraming proyektong pang-enerhiya gaya ng dam at geothermal (pito sa walong munisipyo ng probinsya ang kasalukuyang may mga ganitong proyekto) na pawang pinondohan mula sa mga pautang na nakuha ni Duterte sa China at iba pang kahalintulad na bansa. Ipinangangalandakan ng gobyerno na ang mga proyektong ito ay magbibigay ng hanapbuhay sa mga mamamayan ng probinsya ngunit sa esensya ang mga trabahong ito ay pangsamantala lamang at kung ikukumpara sa peligrong idudulot nito sa kalikasan ay wala itong kahit anong maidudulot sa masa kung hindi perwisyo at lalong pagkasira ng kanilang kabuhayan.

Pinaiigting din ng rehimen gamit ang reaksyunaryong armado nitong AFP ang rekrutment ng CAFGU sa lugar bilang di umano alternatibong pagkakitaan ng mga hikahos na masa ngunit sa katotohanan ay nagsisilbi lamang ito sa interes ng rehimen na maghasik ng takot at saywar sa mga komunidad sa kanayunan. Sapilitang nirerekrut ng AFP ang mga masang magsasaka upang maging utus-utusan, giya sa mga operasyong militar at ahente-paniktik sa mga komunidad. Kung tutuusin ay pang-“betsin” lang ang sahod ng CAFGU na P4,800/buwan na hindi sasapat na panustos sa pangangailangan ng pamilya. Isinusubo lamang ng rehimen at ng AFP ang mga CAFGU sa delikadong trabaho na kontra-mamamayan sa kabuuan. Sa halip na paunlarin ang sektor na agrikultura at magbigay ng disenteng ikabubuhay, sinasadya ng rehimen na paigtingin ang krisis sa kabuhayan at pagpapabaya nito sa mga batayang sektor at maging sa mga pambansang minorya upang lalo nitong makontrol at manipulahin ang pamumuhay ng mga ito.

Mahigpit ang ugnayan ng development aggression sa probinsya sa tumitinding militarisasyon dito. Sa pwersahang pagpasok ng mga dayuhang kumpanya ng enerhiya na kakamkam sa yaman ng Kordilyera, sinisigurado ng rehimen ang proteksyon sa mga ito sa pamamagitang ng pagpapaigting ng militarisasyon sa lugar at malawakang rekrutment ng reaksyunaryong armado sa hanay ng mga mamamayan, pangunahin na sa mga pambansang minorya. Nagkukubli sa tabing ng pag-unlad at pangkabuhayan ang tunay na layunin ng rehimen na kamkamin ang yaman at lupang ninuno ng Kordilyera.

Tinutulak ng rehimen ang mamamayang Pilipino sa desperasyon at kamatayan. Walang dapat ibang gawin ang mga mamamayan kung hindi ang mag-alsa at lumaban mula sa pambubusabos ng naghaharing-uri. Dapat buong-lakas na harapin ng konsolidadong hanay ng mga manggagawa iba pang sektor ang mga atakeng neoliberal sa kanilang mga karapatan at kagalingan. Hindi dapat hayaan na mabawi ang mga tagumpay ng kilusan na pinagbuhusan ng pawis at dugo ng laksa-laksang mamamayang lumalaban para rito. Marapat na singilin ng mamamayan ang kahayupan ng rehimen na patuloy na nangyuyurak sa kanilang mga karapatan at pumapatay sa kanilang kabuhayan. Hindi dapat magpalinlang sa mga palipad-hangin at pangako ng rehimen bagkus ay maging kritikal at mapanuri rito. Marapat na tahakin ng mga manggagawa ang landas ng rebolusyon, ng armadong pakikibaka, na siyang tanging solusyon upang makawala sila sa tanikala ng pagsasamantala kasama ang iba pang uring api. Tanging sa tagumpay lamang ng demokratikong rebolusyong bayan makakamit ang nasyunal na industriyalisasyon na siyang tutugon sa mga batayang karapatan at kagalingan di lamang ng uring manggagawa kung hindi ng lahat ng uri.



CPP/NDF-Mindoro: Bumabangis ang pasismo ng estado sa ika-15 taong paggunita ng pagpaslang kina Eden Marcellana at Eddie Gumanoy

National Democratic Front (NDF)-Mindoro propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (Apr 30): Bumabangis ang pasismo ng estado sa ika-15 taong paggunita ng pagpaslang kina Eden Marcellana at Eddie Gumanoy

Ka Maria Patricia Andal, Spokesperson
NDFP Mindoro

30 April 2018

Ginugunita ng buong rebolusyonaryong kilusan sa Mindoro ang walang-awang pagpaslang ng berdugong tropa ng Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) kina Eden Marcellana at Eddie Gumanoy noong ika-22 ng Abril, 2003. Labinlimang taon matapos ang naturang karumal-dumal na krimen, bumabangis pang lalo ang mga bayarang sundalo sa ilalim naman ng pamumuno ng kasalukuyang macho-pasistang si Rodrigo Duterte.

Naglulunsad ng fact-finding mission sa mga bayan ng Gloria at Bansud sa Oriental Mindoro sina Marcellana, tumatayo noong pangkalahatang kalihim ng Karapatan-Timog Katagalugan, at Gumanoy, pangkalahatang kalihim ng Katipunan ng Samahang Magbubukid sa Timog Katagalugan, kasama ang iba pang human rights volunteers nang dukutin sila ng tropa ng 204th Brigade. Natagpuan sa Bansud ang mga labi nina Marcellana at Gumanoy na kinakitaan ng mga bakas ng labis na pagpapahirap bago tuluyang paslangin.

Sa kabila ng matibay na ebidensya at presyur ng mga mananaggol, grupo ng karapatang tao at iba’t ibang sektor sa bansa at ibayong dagat, walang naparusahan sa sinumang nasa likod ng krimeng ito.

Sa araw na ito, itinatransporma natin ang ating pagdadalamhati sa ibayong paghihimagsik laban sa tiranikong paghahari ni Duterte, katambal ang mga militaristang sina Delfin Lorenzana, Eduardo Año at Hermogenes Esperon.

Marami pang tulad nina Marcellana at Gumanoy ang nagdurusa dahil sa tripleng gyerang inilulunsad ng rehimeng US-Duterte. Daanlibong mamamayan na ang biktima ng berdugo at mersenaryong AFP-PNP, kabilang ang mahigit 410,000 mamamayan sa Mindanao na biktima ng sapilitang paglikas mula nang ideklara ni Duterte ang Batas Militar sa isla; 13,000 pinaslang sa ilalim ng “gyera kontra-droga”; at ilandaang biktima ng pampulitikang pamamaslang sa ilalim ng kontra-insurhensyang Oplan Kapayapaan.

Sa desperadong pagtatangka nitong supilin ang pagbabalikwas ng mamamayan, idineklara ni Duterte ang mga ligal na samahang kritikal sa kanyang mga anti-mamamayang patakaran bilang mga teroristang organisasyon, sa partikular bilang mga prente ng Communist Party of the Philippines at New People’s Army. Sa pamamagitan ng Presidential Proclamation No. 374, tinutugis ng mga “bounty hunters” ang 600 indibidwal, kabilang ang mga lider at myembro ng mga ligal na samahan. Kinasuhan sila ng kasong kriminal sa ilalim ng anti-demokrasyang Human Security Act/Anti-Terrorism Law. Isinasakdal sila bilang mga kriminal dahil lamang sa kanilang pampulitikang pananaw.

Wala itong pinag-iba sa tinungo ng mga nagdaang rehimen, kabilang ang kay Gloria Arroyo, na siyang utak sa pagpaslang kina Marcellana at Gumanoy. Ginagamit ngayon ng rehimeng US-Duterte ang taktikang “McCarthyist” upang bigyang-katwiran ang panunupil, panggigipit, pagdukot, pag-aresto at maging pagpaslang sa mga lider-masa, aktibista at karaniwang mamamayan.

Demokratikong Rebolusyong Bayan ang tanging paraan upang maigawad ang katarungan para kina Marcellana at Gumanoy. Ito ang ultimong paraan upang madurog ang AFP bilang haligi ng kapangyarihan ng pasistang rehimen. Ito ang pampulitikang linyang ubos-kayang itinataguyod ng National Democratic Front (NDF) – Mindoro.

Dinadakila ng NDF-Mindoro ang kabayanihan nina Marcellana at Gumanoy, kabilang ang libu-libong iba pa na nabuwal sa pakikibaka para sa pangmatagalang kapayapaang nakabatay sa katarungang panlipunan. Magniningning ang kanilang kabayanihan sa mahirap na landas tungo sa pagtatagumpay ng kanilang naiwang pakikibaka.

CPP/NDF-ST: Manggagawang Pilipino, magkaisa upang wakasan ang kontraktwalisasyon at neoliberal na paghahari sa bansa!

National Democratic Front (NDF)-Southern Tagalog propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (May 1): Manggagawang Pilipino, magkaisa upang wakasan ang kontraktwalisasyon at neoliberal na paghahari sa bansa!

Patnubay de Guia, Spokesperson
NDFP Southern Tagalog

1 May 2018

Nakikiisa ang National Democratic Front-Southern Tagalog sa lahat ng manggagawang Pilipino at mamamayan sa kanilang panawagang kagyat na ibasura ang kontraktwalisasyon at wakasan na ang “endo” sa bansa. Sa okasyon ng pagdiriwang sa Labor Day o Pandaigdigang Araw ng Paggawa ngayong Mayo Uno, nararapat lamang na dakilain ang lahat ng manggagawa ng daigdig na nakibaka at patuloy na nakikibaka para sa kaseguruhan sa trabaho, disenteng trabaho, nakabubuhay na sahod, karapatan sa pag-uunyon, pagwewelga at iba pa. Sa araw ding ito, napapahong singilin ng mamamayang Pilipino ang rehimeng US-Duterte sa pangako nitong ibasura ang kontraktwalisasyon sa bansa.

Sa loob ng halos dalawang taong paghahari ng rehimeng US-Duterte, hindi pa rin naibabasura ang kontraktwalisasyon bagkus ay sinuhayan pa nito at higit na pinalala sa pamamagitan ng Department of Labor and Employment Order 174. Nananatiling nakapako ang pangako ni Duterteng wakasan ang kontraktwalisasyon, pangakong bukang-bibig nya noong panahon ng eleksyon hanggang pag-upo sa estado-poder.

Sadyang walang balak ang rehimeng US-Duterte na ibasura ang kontraktwalisasyon matapos ipagwalang-bahala ang kautusang inihanda ng iba’t ibang organisasyon ng mga manggagawang magwawakas sa “endo”. Simula’t sapul, hindi ang mga manggagawa ang pinakikinggan ni Duterte kundi ang mga kapitalistang pangunahing nagsasamantala sa murang lakas paggawa at pinapaburan ang neoliberalismong inilalako ng imperyalismong US sa bansa. Hangga’t hindi nakakawala ang Pilipinas sa gapos ng imperyalistang pandarambong at pagsasamantala, mananatili ang mga hambalos ng neoliberalismo tulad ng labor only contracting at iba pang iskema ng pleksibilisasyon sa paggawa. Sa ganitong mga tindig ni Duterte, mahirap nang asahan ang kanyang rehimen na maibsan ang pagdurusa ng mga manggagawang Pilipino.
Sa Timog Katagalugan pa lamang, nagpapatuloy at lalo pang tumitindi ang pakikibaka ng mga manggagawa laban sa kontraktwalisasyon. Mula nang umupo sa pwesto si Duterte, higit pang lumala ang kalagayan ng mga manggagawa. Bagama’t malaki ang ipinamalas na pag-asa ng DOLE at ng kanyang rehimen noong panahon ng peace talks, nagmistulang buladas lamang ang pangakong iregularisa ang libu-libong manggagawang kontraktwal sa rehiyon. Wala pa sa dalawang porsyento ng 29,202 manggagawang denisisyunang dapat gawing regular ang kinilala at niregularisa ng mga pagawaang kanilang pinapasukan. Hanggang sa kasalukuyan, nanatiling 80-90% ng mga manggagawa sa rehiyon ang kontraktwal at ang mga inilalabas na kautusan ng DOLE ay pawang mga pakitang-tao lamang at hindi tiyak na naipapatupad.

Hanggang ngayon, hindi pa rin nireregularisa ang mga manggagawa ng Technol Eight at Sun Logistics, ng Yazaki Torres na may mahigit sa 15,000 manggagawang kontraktwal, mahigit sa 6,000 sa EMI Yazaki sa Cavite habang aabot sa 14,000 sa pagawaan ng Epson sa Batangas.

Sa Takata Philippines, may 3,900 kontraktwal na nakaambang mawalan ng trabaho dahil sa planong pagbebenta nito sa korporasyong Amerikano. Hindi malayong sapitin ng mga manggagawa ng Takata ang nangyari sa mga manggagawa ng MIESCOR (Meralco) sa Sto. Tomas, Batangas nang magsara ito ngayong taon matapos linlangin ang mga manggagawa.
Isang tampok na laban ngayon sa rehiyon ang pakikibaka ng mga kontraktwal na manggagawa ng Coca-Cola Femsa Philippines sa planta nito sa Sta. Rosa, Laguna. Naitulak ng mga manggagawa ng Coca-Cola ang DOLE upang maglabas ng desisyon na gawing regular ang 675 na manggagawang kontratwal ngunit hindi pa rin ito naipapatupad.

Ang napipintong pagbubukas ng peace talks sa pagitan ng NDFP at GRP ang nagbibigay ng pag-asa sa uring manggagawang matugunan ang kanyang mga kahilingan hanggang sa maksimum na ipatupad ang pambansang industriyalisasyon. Laman ito ng ikalawang adyenda sa usapan na Comprehensive Agreement on Socio-economic Reforms (CASER). Ngunit nakasalalay ito sa sinseridad ng rehimeng US-Duterteng tugunan ang hinaing ng mga manggagawa.

Ngayong Mayo Uno, dapat na padagundungin ng lahat ng manggagawa ang kanilang lakas at galit laban sa anti-mamamayan at anti-manggagawang rehimeng US-Duterte. Kailangang igiit nila ang pagpapatuloy ng peace talks at kagyat na pagbubuo ng kasunduan sa repormang sosyo-ekonomiko. Kasabay nito, hindi nila dapat tantanan ang pakikibaka upang tuluyan nang wakasan ang kontraktwalisasyon sa bansa kasabay ng paggigiit na isulong ang pambansang industriyalisasyon na tatapos sa dominasyon ng imperyalismong US sa ekonomiya ng bansa at lilikha ng marami at disenteng trabaho para sa mamamayan.

Batid ng mga manggagawang tanging ang pagtatagumpay ng digmang bayan ang mapagpasyang hakbang ng lahat ng manggagawang Pilipino upang tapusin hindi lamang ang kontraktwalisasyon kundi higit ang dominasyon ng imperyalismong US sa bansa. Upang maging posible ito, kailangang patuloy na sumalig ang uring manggagawa sa kanilang lakas at makiisa sa iba pang inaaping uri upang isulong ang armadong pakikibaka sa kanayunan at sumapi sa Bagong Hukbong Bayan.###

CPP: Manggagawang Pilipino, magkaisa at buklurin ang buong bayan!

Propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (Apr 29): Manggagawang Pilipino, magkaisa at buklurin ang buong bayan!

Communist Party of the Philippines

29 April 2018

Kasama ng uring manggagawang Pilipino, at ng masang proletaryo sa buong daigdig, ipinagdiriwang ng Partido Komunista ng Pilipinas (PKP) ang Pandaigdigang Araw ng Paggawa. Bigyang-pugay natin ang mga bayani at martir ng kilusang manggagawa. Gawin nating inspirasyon ang kanilang buhay ng walang pag-iimbot na paglilingkod sa bayan.

Ginugunita natin ang Mayo Uno ngayong taon na malaki ang tungkuling buklurin ang pinakamalawak na bilang ng mga manggagawa para isulong ang mga pakikibakang pangkabuhayan at labanan ang anti-manggagawa at anti-mamamayang pasistang rehimeng US-Duterte.

Dagdag na makabuluhan ang paggunita sa Mayo Uno ngayong taon dahil ipagdiriwang din natin sa ilang araw sa Mayo 5, ang ika-200 taon ng araw ng kapanganakan ni Karl Marx, pinakadakilang gurong komunista. Si Marx ang unang nakapaglahad ng ideolohiya ng proletaryo. Sa mahigit nang isa’t kalahating siglo, ginabayan ng Marxismo ang mga manggagawa sa kanilang mga pakikibaka sa ekonomya at pagsusulong ng rebolusyonaryong pakikibaka para wakasan ang sistema ng pang-aaliping sahuran. Umunlad ang Marxismo sa Marxismo-Leninismo-Maoismo sa tatlong yugtong dinaanan na epikong tunggalian ng kapitalismo at proletaryong rebolusyon.

Balik-tanawin natin ang makasaysayang mga pakikibaka para sa walong-oras na paggawa, makatarungang sahod, karapatan sa pag-uunyon, pagwewelga at iba pang karapatan ng mga manggagawa sa buong mundo. Higit sa lahat, gunitain natin ang ika-100 taong anibersaryo ng tagumpay ng Dakilang Proletaryong Rebolusyong Oktubre sa Russia na nagtatag ng diktadura ng proletaryo at nagbukas ng pitong dekadang matatagumpay na sosyalistang rebolusyon at konstruksyon sa sangkatlo ng buong daigdig.

Subalit nagapi ng burgesya ang proletaryo at naipanumbalik ang kapitalismo sa Russia, China at iba pang bansa. Napaatras ang sosyalistang rebolusyon sa buong mundo. Gayunman, ang mga nagawa nito sa pagpawi sa pagsasamantala at mabilis na pag-angat ng antas ng lipunan ay nananatiling inspirasyon sa mga manggagawa at masang anakpawis para magsikhay sa rebolusyonaryong landas. Ang patuloy na paglubha ng iba’t ibang anyo ng kapitalistang pagsasamantala sa ilalim ng mga patakarang neoliberal ay nagpapasidhi ng kanilang pagnanais na iluwal ang panibagong pagdaluyong ng bagong demokratiko at sosyalistang rebolusyon sa buong daigdig.

Sa Pilipinas, pinapasan ng masang manggagawa ang bigat ng palagiang krisis ng malakolonyal at malapyudal na sistema. Mabilis na lumalala ang kanilang kalagayan sa ilalim ng ni Duterte. Pambubuladas ang ipinagmalaki niyang siya’y “sosyalista.” Ang totoo, siya’y anti-manggagawa at maka-kapitalista. Pinako ang mababang sahod ng mga manggagawa para akitin ang dayong mamumuhunan. Ang nakatakdang minimum sa NCR (₱512 kada araw) ay wala pa sa kalahati ng kailangan (₱1,171 kada araw) para disenteng mabuhay ang laking-anim na pamilya. Lumalala pa ang krisis ng disempleyo matapos mahigit 630,000 trabaho ang minasaker noong nagdaang taon. Araw-araw, libu-libo ang napupwersang mangibang-bayan. Pabor siyang pahabain ang araw ng paggawa sa pamamagitan ng four-day workweek. Binabalewala ang kagalingan at kaligtasan sa pagawaan. Ginagamit ang pulis at mga sundalo upang supilin ang karapatan sa pag-uunyon at pagwelga.

Sa ilalim ni Duterte, walang ibang mapagpipilian ang mga manggagawa kundi ang bagtasin ang landas ng militanteng pakikibaka. Itayong muli ang libu-libong unyon. Puspusang isulong ang demokratikong mga pakikibaka. Ibangon at malakihang isulong ang militanteng kilusang manggagawa. Pasiklabin ang mga pakikibakang manggagawa sa libu-libong mga pagawaan at iba pang empresa.

Buuin ang pinakamalapad na pagkakaisa ng masang manggagawang Pilipino laban sa rehimeng US-Duterte para labanan ang anti-manggagawang mga patakaran at programa nito. Kaalinsabay nito, pamunuan ang pagbubuklod sa sambayanang Pilipino para ihiwalay, labanan at ibagsak ang rehimeng US-Duterte—ang numero unong kaaway ng buong bayan.

Buuin ang pinakamalapad na pagkakaisa ng masang manggagawa laban sa tiraniya at terorismo ng rehimeng US-Duterte. Makipagkaisa sa masang magsasaka sa kanayunan, sa kanilang mga pakikibakang antipyudal at sa paglaban nila sa pasistang atake laban sa kanilang mga komunidad. Ilantad sa kalunsuran at mga sentrong bayan ang pambobomba, pananakop, tortyur, pagdakip at pagkulong, pagnanakaw at iba pang pandarahas ng Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) sa ilalim ng Oplan Kapayapaan.

Sumapi sa Partido Komunista ng Pilipinas! Ang partido komunista ang ating partidong pampulitika. Binubuklod ito ng Marxismo-Leninismo-Maoismo, ang ideolohiya ng proletaryo. Ito ang konsentrasyon ng maka-uring interes ng mga manggagawa. Itinuturo nito ang landas ng paglaban upang ibagsak ang paghahari ng mga mapagsamantala at mapang-aping uri at itatag ang kapangyarihang pampulitika ng proletaryo.

Mga manggagawa, magsandata at maging mga Pulang kumander at mandirigma ng Bagong Hukbong Bayan! Itinatag ng Partido ang hukbong bayan para isulong ang armadong pakikibaka at durugin ang mga armadong galamay ng naghaharing estado. Isinusulong ang matagalang digmang bayan para mag-ipon ng lakas sa kanayunan at palibutan ang kalunsuran hanggang kaya na nitong ibagsak ang mga reaksyunaryong uri at itatag ang demokratikong kapangyarihan ng bayan sa buong bansa.

Limampung taon nang sumusulong ang demokratikong rebolusyong bayan sa Pilipinas. Ang mga pagsulong na ito sa nakaraan ang nagbibigay sa mamamayang Pilipino ng pag-asa na makamit ang ganap na tagumpay sa hinaharap para itatag ang isang malaya at maunlad na kinabukasan.

Mabuhay ang mga manggagawang Pilipino!

Gunitain ang ika-200 taong anibersaryo ng kapanganakan ni Karl Marx!

Yakapin at palaganapin ang Marxismo-Leninismo-Maoismo!

Ibagsak ang rehimeng US-Duterte!

Isulong ang demokratikong rebolusyong bayan!

Mabuhay ang Partido Komunista ng Pilipinas!

DWDD: STOP NPA TERRORISM | 3ID condemns NPA torching heavy equipment in Capiz

From DWDD AFP Civil Relations Service Radio Website (Apr 30): STOP NPA TERRORISM  |  3ID condemns NPA torching heavy equipment in Capiz

CAMP GEN MACARIO PERALTA JR, Jamindan, Capiz (DWDD) – The 3rd Infantry (Spearhead) Division under the leadership of Brigadier General Dinoh Dolina condemned to the highest degree the burning incident perpetrated by the CPP-NPA Terrorist in Bgry. San Martin, Dumalag, Capiz at around 2:50 P.M., April 24, 2018 (Tuesday).

“Burning of a roller compactor used for rehabilitation of the roads on the said barangay is a clear indication of economic sabotage. Yet, they are proving once again, that they are anti-people, anti-development and anti-peace.”

According to the police investigation, the said equipment is owned by S.T. Salcedo Construction Corporation. Leodegario Futotana Jr, operator of the roller compactor said that, while he was pouring asphalt on the newly-constructed road with Ronde Araso and a certain “Putot Laho”, the eight fully-armed perpetrators arrived and pointed their long firearms towards Araso which caused the latter to run away. The suspects then asked Futotana in vernacular “UPOD NIYO TO? INDI SIYA MAANO SA NPA AH! CONTRACTOR LANG AMON KAY WALA NA NAGABAYAD”, the suspects then took the key of the roller compactor and poured three (3) gallons of gasoline and set it on fire. While the roller compactor is burning, the fully-armed terrorists fired twice the windshield of the equipment and fled towards the direction of Jamindan, Capiz.

“They refuse being tagged as terrorist, yet their action clearly shows that they are indeed, terrorists. According to Sec 3 of the Rep. Act 9372 or The Human Security Act of 2007, crimes involving destruction or under Presidential Decree no. 1613 (The Law on Arson), burning of equipment or arson, is a crime of Terrorism.”

This Command believes that this incident is due to failure of extortion demand of the CPP-NPA Terrorist. “We commend the owner for not giving up despite the possibility of losing her properties. We also encourage other businessmen and farmers to reject the extortion demand of these terrorists. If you stop giving in to their demands, day will come that this terrorist organization will shatter.”

“We urge the people especially the people of Capiz to denounce CPP-NPAs terrorism activities and keep informing the Army and the PNP about the movement and extortion activities of this terrorist organization.” 3DPAO / MCAG

DWDD: STOP NPA TERRORISM | 3ID debunks NPA claim of militarization

From DWDD AFP Civil Relations Service Radio Website (Apr 30): STOP NPA TERRORISM  |  3ID debunks NPA claim of militarization

CAMP GEN MACARIO PERALTA JR, Jamindan, Capiz (DWDD) ‘It is you whom militarized and terrorized the people in Negros”

The 3rd Infantry (Spearhead) Division under the leadership of Brigadier General Dinoh Dolina brushed off the allegation of the Leonardo Panaligan Command of the CPP-NPA Terrorist that the Army is responsible for the militarization of Central Negros.

“This is an obsolete and repetitive issue that they have been tossing at us out of desperation. This clearly indicates the absence of issues they could use to jeopardize the Army and the government.”

“As the legitimate Armed Forces, it is our mandate to safeguard the people and the land against you who are truly responsible of militarization and terrorism against them. Our presence in the hinterlands is a response to the cry of the community who are victims of your endless and ruthless criminal activities. Does helping the community to bring their issues and concerns to the LGUs and other government agencies now mean ‘militarization? How about slaughtering helpless civilians, burning of properties and conducting extortion even against less fortunate individuals, what do you call that? If there is an appalling word than ‘terrorist’, that is you!”

“Evident to this is your barbaric acts of terrorism; killing retired police officer and soldier in Moises Padilla recently who are now living as civilians; continuous and ceaseless forced taxation against the local populace. If there is someone who needs to vacate those communities, it is you. Because your mere presence alone is enough to terrify the people.”

“Communities warmly welcome our occurrence, in fact, they are grateful of our presence cause they have been living scared for a long time because of your vicious intentions and activities.”

“We commend the people’s cooperation in fighting against these terrorists; it is a clear indication that they are tired of the senseless and bloody armed struggle being waged by the CPP-NPA Terrorist. We are calling the people to remain vigilant and continue reporting the activities and whereabouts of these terrorists to stop them from casting more terror and ruthlessness in the community.” 3DPAO / MCAG

DWDD: HOPE OF THE FUTURE | Tabak Division Culminates Youth Leadership Summit

From DWDD AFP Civil Relations Service Radio Website (Apr 30): HOPE OF THE FUTURE  |  Tabak Division Culminates Youth Leadership Summit

KUTA SANG-AN, Labangan, Zamboanga del Sur (DWDD) – The first ever Youth Leadership Summit (YLS) held at Headquarters, 1st Infantry “TABAK” Division was culminated on April 26, 2018.

Almost 1,200 youth leaders from the different municipalities of Zamboanga del Sur participated in the culminating ceremony at the Tabak Gymnasium.

The event was graced with Hon. Delfin N Lorenzana, Secretary of National Defense, Hon. Divina Grace C. Yu, Congresswoman 1st District of Zamboanga del Sur, Lt. Gen. Carlito G. Galvez Jr., Chief of Staff AFP, and Maj. Gen. Roseller G. Murillo, 1st Infantry Division Commander.

According to Sec. Lorenzana, “youth are the hope of the future, dont give up, and stand by your mission .”

Likewise Hon. Yu also stated that “as youth leaders, be honest, courteous, obedient and most importantly, love your country.”


The six batches YLS was facilitated by the 53rd Infantry Battalion in the 1st Infantry Division Training School.

Other than lectures and team building activities, the participants also experienced firing rifle, rappelling and familiarity of the obstacle courses of the trainees.

“Our objectives were to educate and empower young people on current issues hindering peace and progress, to accept individual responsibility, practice leadership, and instill patriotism and love of country.”, said Maj. Gen. Murillo.

The summit was made possible with the support and partnership among the House of Representative, 1st District Zamboanga del Sur, DILG, OCD, PNP, DOH, DEPED, NYC and AFP. 1DPAO / MCAG

DWDD: INTENSIFIED CAMPAIGN | 34IB receives 112 loose firearms in North Cotabato

From DWDD AFP Civil Relations Service Radio Website (Apr 30): INTENSIFIED CAMPAIGN  |  34IB receives 112 loose firearms in North Cotabato

CAMP GEN GONZALO SIONGCO, Awang, Datu Odin Sinsuat, Maguindanao (DWDD) – A total of 119 unlicensed firearms were surrendered by the local government of Midsayap in North Cotabato on April 26, 2018 at around 11:00a.m. as the AFP together with the local government units have intensified its campaign against loose firearms as part of the implementation of the Martial Law.

Mayor Romeo D. Araña of Midsayap led the turnover of firearms before the Army’s 602nd Infantry Brigade and 34th Infantry Battalion with Assistant Division Commander Brig. Gen. Cirilo Thomas P. Donato Jr of 6th Infantry Division and North Cotabato Governor Emmylou “Lala” Taliño-Mendoza held at 34th IB Headquarters in Brgy Salunayan in Midsayap.

The 63 high-powered and 56 low-powered firearms coming from the different baangays of the municipality were received by Brig. Gen. Donato, 34th IB Commander Lt. Col. Angelo C. Lutera, and 602nd Brigade Commander Col. Alfredo V. Rosario Jr.

Last April 19, Carmen town surrendered 102 loose firearms to the military, which is the first town in North Cotabato to yield unlicensed weapons.

As part of the intensified campaign against loose firearms, 6th ID Commander Maj. Gen. Arnel B. Dela Vega urged other municipalities of North Cotabato to also turn over their illegal firearms to make Central Mindanao a peaceful and gun-free community.

The campaign against loose firearms brought a total of 1,019 recovered and surrendered as of today in 6th ID’s area of jurisdiction. 6DPAO / MCAG

DWDD: 43IB attends Peace Covenant Signing

From DWDD AFP Civil Relations Service Radio Website (Apr 30): 43IB attends Peace Covenant Signing

CAPUL. Northern Samr (DWDD) – LTC Apollo B Herrerra INF (GSC) PA, Commanding Officer, 43rd Infantry “We Search” Battalion, 8th Infantry “Stormtrooper” Division, PA attended Peace Covenant Signing at municipality of Capul, Northern Samar. 4IB / MCAG

DWDD: STAKEHOLDER AWARENESS | NOLCOM holds Northern Maritime Forum

From DWDD AFP Civil Relations Service Radio Website (Apr 30): STAKEHOLDER AWARENESS  |  NOLCOM holds Northern Maritime Forum

LINGAYEN, Pangasinan (DWDD) – Major General Felimon T. Santos Jr., AFP, Commander of the 7th Infantry “Kaugnay” Division, Philippine Army, along with other Officers of 7ID, attended the Northern Maritime Forum held in Lingayen, Pangasinan last April 25, 2018. 7DPAO / MCAG

DWDD: UPGRADING | 2ID Groundbreaking of the various infrastructure projects

From DWDD AFP Civil Relations Service Radio Website (Apr 30): UPGRADING | 2ID Groundbreaking of the various infrastructure projects
CAMP GEN MATEO CAPINPIN, Tanay, Rizal – The 2nd Infantry (Jungle Fighter) Division holds the groundbreaking ceremony of the concrete road network project inside Camp Capinpin, Tanay Rizal on April 24, 2018.

Congressman Isidro S Rodriguez Jr. of Rizal Province and Engineer Adilbert B Rosete together with Brigadier General Glorivine Dida AFP, Assistant Division Commander, 2ID led the ceremony.


The 51 million pesos concreting of road network is implemented by the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), Rizal II District Engineering Office.

Meanwhile, the 2nd Army Station Hospital (2ASH) is also being upgraded from Infirmary level to Level 1 hospital. The Level 1 hospital has surgical and maternity facilities, isolation room, dental clinics, secondary clinical laboratory, surgery room, blood station, first level X-ray and pharmacy.

Major General Rhoderick M Parayno AFP, Commander, 2ID said that the hospital will not only benefit the soldiers of 2ID but this will also help the civilians in the province to access the quality medical service.

The 10 million pesos Phase-1 hospital upgrade project is under the Health Facility Enhancement Program (HFEP) of the Department of Health (DOH) in partnership with the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP). The Phase- 1 project will be completed next month.



MGen Parayno, Commander, 2ID also led the blessing of the newly renovated Officer quarter and one (1) unit dump truck issued by the Philippine Army.

The facilities and amenities upgrade inside Camp Capinpin is part of the program of the Command to give priority to the morale and welfare of the troops and civilian employees working in 2ID. 2DPAO / MCAG

After 18 years, Tagum soldier killed in Erap's all-out war gets hero's burial

From Rappler (Apr 30): After 18 years, Tagum soldier killed in Erap's all-out war gets hero's burial

Technical Sergeant Claudio Forrosuelo died fighting the Moro Islamic Liberation Front in Maguindanao in 2000

HERO. The remains of valour awardee Technical Sergeant Claudio Forrosuelo are exhumed from Tagum City in April 2018, and will be brought to Taguig City for interment at the Libingan ng mga Bayani. Photo from the Facebook account of Joemar Rey Escaro Yanga, the late soldier’s nephew

HERO. The remains of valour awardee Technical Sergeant Claudio Forrosuelo are exhumed from Tagum City in April 2018, and will be brought to Taguig City for interment at the Libingan ng mga Bayani. Photo from the Facebook account of Joemar Rey Escaro Yanga, the late soldier’s nephew

 Almost two decades after his death, Sergeant Claudio Forrosuelo will be given a hero’s burial, having died during President Joseph Estrada’s all-out war in Mindanao in 2000.

Forrosuelo's remains were exhumed on Monday, April 30, in Tagum City, according to Major Ezra Balagtey, spokesperson of the Eastern Mindanao Command. They will be transferred to the Libingan ng Mga Bayani at Fort Bonifacio in Taguig City.

Forrosuelo was a member of the 8th Scout Ranger Company and was deployed in Matanog, Maguindanao, "during the height of hostilities in the area,” the spokesman said.

On May 3, 2000, Forrosuelo was killed in a tactical assault against some 500 rebels belonging to the Moro Islamic Liberation Front in the same province, according to a Philippine Information Agency report.

He was conferred with the Medal of Valor in 2001. (FAST FACTS: List of Medal of Valor awardees and their privileges)

His daughter, 2nd Lieutenant Precious Jewel Forrosuelo, followed his footsteps and joined the army in 2014 after graduating from the Philippine Military Academy's "Siklab Diwa" class.

The younger Forrosuelo is also part of the First Scount Ranger Regiment, a special unit by the military specializing in anti-guerilla warfare, and the same unit to which her father belonged.

Balagtey said the soldier was not immediately given a hero's burial because of his family's decision to bury his remains first in Carmen, Cotabato.

"It was then moved to Tagum City, until they decided that they wanted it moved to the LNMB (Libingan ng Mga Bayani)," he told Rappler.

At the time of Forrosuelo death, the Philippine government waged war against the MILF, which killed hundreds of civilians, apart from soldiers and rebels.

Military task force on standby for May 1 rallies

From the Philippine News Agency (Apr 30): Military task force on standby for May 1 rallies

The military's Joint Task Force-National Capital Region (JTF-NCR) announced that two platoons are on stand-by to assist in ensuring security during the country's observance of Labor Day on Tuesday.

This was disclosed by JTF-NCR head Brig. Gen. Alan Arrojado in an interview late Sunday.

He added that the JTF-NCR has yet to receive any request for assistance from the National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) for securing Labor Day activities.

These two platoons are being supported by an Explosive Ordnance Disposal-K 9 team and another team from the military's Emergency Medical Recon.

A platoon is composed of 24 to 28 officers and enlisted men while a team consists of four personnel.

Also, Arrojado said that they are still to monitor any security threats for the annual observance.

PNP warns rally organizers of infiltrators

From the Philippine News Agency (Apr 30): PNP warns rally organizers of infiltrators

The Philippine National Police (PNP) on Monday cautioned groups holding Labor Day rallies to ensure that their ranks will not be infiltrated by members of violent terror groups such as the Rajah Solaiman Movement (RSM).

This comes after the arrest of two alleged Islamic radicals last week and who were presented to newsmen by the PNP Monday.

PNP Director General Oscar Albayalde presented the two, namely Jimuel Velasco Dizon, alias Amir; and Eddie Boy Alejo Bermejo alias Abdullah, both of whom are Balik Islam converts and former RSM members.

They were arrested in separate operations in Cabuyao and Sta. Rosa City, Laguna and were identified as members of the Suyuful Khilafa Fil Luzon.

Albayalde said no definite plan for an attack was recovered from the suspects who yielded four handguns, ammunition, grenades, a laptop, and an ISIS flag.

Two search warrants, signed by San Pablo City Regional Trial Court Branch 32 Judge Agripino Morga, were served on the two men on Block 31, Lot 114 Joshua St., Phase 5, Mabuhay Subdivision, Barangay Mamatid, Cabuyao City, Laguna and on Block 17, Lot 18, Celina Homes 5 Subdivision, Barangay Tagapo, Sta. Rosa City, also in Laguna early Thursday.

At present, Albayalde said there seems to be no specific threat from the RSM, whose members had been trained and financed by both the Abu Sayyaf and Jemaah Islamiyah terror groups.

"As of this time, we are not getting any information but we have also our intelligence personnel to monitor that," Albayalde said.

"In these kinds of activities, especially where people converge, we advise their ranks that they should be careful, remain vigilant, avoid being infiltrated. Remember, there are times that rallies like that are infiltrated by provocateurs who take advantage of the situation and result in an armed encounter between them and the police," Albayalde said.

"In their ranks they should know who are insiders. They should cleanse their ranks and identify people because there are other groups that could probably take advantage of this, not only local terrorist groups but also their allies,” he added.

AFP backs PRRD decision not to lift CPP-NPA terror tag

From the Philippine News Agency (Apr 30): AFP backs PRRD decision not to lift CPP-NPA terror tag

The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) on Monday said it strongly supports President Rodrigo Duterte's pronouncements that he is not yet lifting his proclamation tagging the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People's Army (CPP-NPA) as a terrorist organization.

"The AFP supports the President's statement that the NPA terrorist tag should remain for now as they have continued with their acts of terrorism such as arson, attacks on civilians and extortion," AFP spokesperson Brig. Gen. Bienvenido Datuin said in a statement.

Datuin said what is more aggravating is that these attacks took place despite the government's call for peace and unity as priority agenda with the expected resumption of the peace talks.

Duterte signed the proclamation in December last year, tagging the CPP-NPA as a terror group, based on Republic Act No. 10168 or the Terrorism Financing Prevention and Suppression Act of 2012.

Despite the proclamation, Duterte said he would still give the CPP-NPA a small "window" to talk peace by inviting CPP founder Jose Maria "Joma" Sison to return to the Philippines.

PNP confirms abduction of 2 female cops in Sulu

From the Philippine News Agency (Apr 30): PNP confirms abduction of 2 female cops in Sulu

The Philippine National Police (PNP) said it is constantly monitoring developments on the abduction of two female police officers in Patikul, Sulu.

During Monday's press briefing, Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Oscar Albayalde said they have yet to receive a comprehensive report on the incident.

Police Officer 2 Benierose Alvarez, Police Officer 1 Dinah Gumahad, along with two civilians, Jakosalem Ahamad Blas and Faizal Ahidji, were on board a tricycle outside Camp Bautista near the Jolo Airport on Sunday when they were intercepted by armed men.

Alvarez is detailed with the PNP-Crime Laboratory.

"Ang alam natin is yung isa taga (PNP) Crime Lab, tapos yung isa, kaibigan niya (What we know is one of the victims is from the PNP Crime Lab and the other one is her friend). Galing sila sa kampo ng AFP (Armed Forces of the Philippines) at nung pauwi at around 11 a.m yesterday (Sunday), doon sila in-abduct (They came from the AFP camp and they were abducted when around 11 a.m. yesterday when they were on the way home). As of now, wala pang (there is no) communication whatsoever, hindi pa sila ma-contact at wala pang kumokontak doon sa ating tropa sa lugar (they cannot be contacted and no contacts have been made with our troops in the area)," Albayalde said of the incident.

"As of this (morning), wala pa (no updates yet). The operations are still being conducted by our AFP (Armed Forces of the Philippines) doon sa area together with our regional mobile group," Albayalde said.

In recent months, local armed groups have started going after soft targets instead of high profile individuals. These soft targets are mostly skilled workers whose families are willing to pay ransom for their safe release.

Albayalde flies to Koronadal to inspect security after weekend blast

From the Philippine News Agency (Apr 30): Albayalde flies to Koronadal to inspect security after weekend blast

Philippine National Police Chief Oscar Albayalde flew to Koronadal City in South Cotabato on Monday to personally inspect the security situation following the explosion near a church and the discovery of bombs in the city over the weekend.

"We are looking into the involvement of a certain group because apparently, these groups, they have their territorial jurisdictions also but we cannot divulge this group as yet," Albayalde said in a press briefing before leaving for Koronadal City.

Albayalde said the injuries sustained by the victims are very minor but a final report on the details of the incident is still being awaited.

"As of this time, what we know is that the two victims who were wounded sustained minor injuries. Apparently, nails and powder were used in making the explosive," Albayalde said in Filipino.

He confirmed that one of the recovered unexploded bomb was destroyed by bomb experts.

The PNP Explosives and Ordnance Department (EOD) have also conducted safety procedure using bomb sniffing dogs, the PNP chief added.

An Improvised Explosive Device (IED) reportedly exploded near the St. Anthony Parish Cathedral on Sunday injuring two. Subsequently, other IEDs were discovered in the commercial district but were defused.

Military searching for 2 abducted policewomen in Sulu

From the Philippine News Agency (May 1): Military searching for 2 abducted policewomen in Sulu

The military has deployed three battalions in the search for two female police officers reportedly abducted by armed men in Patikul town, Sulu last Sunday.

Joint Task Force Sulu commander Brig. Gen. Cirilito Sobejana said it is likely that the two victims and their captors are still in Patikul.

"Hindi naman lalabas sa Patikul 'yun eh, as we speak meron akong tatlong battalion naghahalughog ngayon for the immediate recovery of the victims [They won't get out of Patikul and as we speak, we have three battalions looking for them]," he said Monday.

Earlier, the Philippine National Police (PNP) said it is constantly monitoring developments on the abduction of Police Officer 2 Benierose Alvarez, Police Officer 1 Dinah Gumahad, along with two civilians, Jakosalem Ahamad Blas and Faizal Ahidji, who were on board a tricycle outside Camp Bautista near the Jolo Airport on Sunday when they were intercepted by armed men.

Alvarez is detailed with the PNP-Crime Laboratory.

Manhunt on vs. 'extremist' suspects behind Koronadal blast

From the Philippine News Agency (Apr 30): Manhunt on vs. 'extremist' suspects behind Koronadal blast

Authorities have launched a manhunt against several personalities with alleged links to "extremist groups," in connection with the bomb explosion beside a Catholic church and the recovery of another improvised explosive here on Sunday.

City Mayor Peter Miguel said Monday investigators have already identified a group of suspects behind the 12:05 p.m. bomb blast at near the side entrance gate of the Christ the King Cathedral along Rizal Street that left two persons slightly injured.

Miguel said the group was also responsible for the foiled attack about two hours later at the 747 convenience store along General Santos Drive.

"The situation is quite clearer now and our investigators are pursuing some leads. Based on the initial findings, it was linked to extremists," he said in an interview over radio station dxKR here.

Miguel did not identify the group, noting that he will leave it to the police and military to do their work.

But he said investigators have already established the identities of at least "five members of the group," which is reportedly based outside the city.

In a press conference, Chief Supt. Marcelo Morales, Region 12 police director, said they are pursuing at least two possible motives in line with the attack.

Morales said it could be a diversionary move of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) due to the continuing intensive military operations in their territories in Maguindanao province.

The official said they are also looking at the incident as a possible retaliation for the series of law enforcement operations launched by the South Cotabato Police Provincial Office that netted several members of local terror groups.

Morales said investigators are currently determining the "signature" of the bomb used in the attack and the recovered explosive.

He said that based on the materials recovered by the South Cotabato police's explosive ordnance disposal (EOD) unit, the bomb was made of firecracker powder mixed with small nails and a mobile phone as triggering device.

The bomb that exploded was planted inside a bag left at a parked tricycle near the church's side entrance; while the second was found inside a plastic bag left at the garbage bin of the convenience store.

The recovered bomb was detonated by EOD personnel.

In both instances, police said witnesses have tagged an unidentified woman as the carrier of the explosive.

The South Cotabato police is currently reviewing footages of security cameras installed near the blast site and the convenience store for other possible leads.

Morales said they have placed the city and other key areas in Region 12 on full alert to avert similar attacks.

Kid red fighter surrenders

From the Philippine News Agency (Apr 30): Kid red fighter surrenders

A 16-year old child, who had been recruited into the communist insurgency under the Leonardo Pacsi Command, surrendered in Mountain Province on Saturday, the Public Affairs Office (PAO) of the military's 5th Infantry Division reported on Monday.

YOUNG SURRENDERER. Sixteen-year-old 'Ka Trese’ shares a light moment with female members of the Philippine Army while recuperating at the Bontoc General Hospital in Mountain Province, where she was rushed by government troops after passing out upon her surrender on Saturday (April 28, 2018). (Photo by 5ID DPAO)

PAO chief Captain Jeffrey Somera, said “Ka Trese” (not her real name) from Bontoc, Mountain Province, surrendered to the 77th Infantry Battalion of the Philippine Army and the Mountain Province Police Provincial Office (PPO) in Barangay Poblacion, Bontoc, Mountain Province around midnight on April 28.

He said the minor joined the NPA when she was 14 years old after she was recruited into the New People's Army by a certain “Commander Jushua” in Paracelis town.

According to the army troops on the ground, Ka Trese appeared to be confused and very tired when she was spotted by soldiers and police in Bontoc town.

Ka Trese then collapsed and was rushed to the Bontoc General Hospital by the soldiers and the police. When she woke up, she initially revealed to the soldiers that she was a red fighter, who ran away from her group.

The minor told government troops she had decided to surrender because she was tired and physically abused by her comrades.

Ka Trese turned over to the soldiers four cellphones, subversive documents, three ammunitions for M16 rifle, a notebook, and some money.

Major General Perfecto Rimando Jr., the commander of the 5th Infantry Division, condemned the leftist organization for what he called their inhumane deeds.

“The expose of Ka Trese cemented the true nature of the (Communist New People's Army Terrorist) organization. It’s hard to imagine that someone as young as Ka Trese was being recruited, and the saddest part was the abuse on her person by her comrades, whom she considered as her brothers,” Rimando said.

"We condemned in the strongest terms the exploitation and abuse of minors under the hands of the CNTs. It is a clear violation of the Comprehensive Agreement on the Respect of Human Rights and International Law on the right of children to protection, especially against physical and mental abuse,” he stressed.

“With this situation, I urge the youth to be discerning and avoid being affiliated with the organizations known connected with the Communist New People’s Army (NPA)," he warned. "They physically, psychologically, and sexually abused their female recruits. Maybe, those amazons or female red fighters who went into lie-low were also abused, but just kept to themselves the trauma and their sad experiences because of fear and shame.”

“We also encourage the parents and guardians to watch their children," Somera added, and if possible, know the company their children are keeping.

2 Army troopers killed, 2 more hurt in separate attacks

From the Philippine News Agency (Apr 30): 2 Army troopers killed, 2 more hurt in separate attacks

Two soldiers were killed and two others were injured in separate ambuscades here and in Sultan Kudarat province blamed by authorities to ISIS-linked elements.

At 5:30 a.m. Monday, gunmen believed to be members of the ISIS-linked Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF), ambushed and killed Army Corporal Nelson Pamalian of the 5th Special Forces Battalion based in this city.

Pamalian and Private First Class Richard Bendanillo, also of the Army's Special Forces, were onboard a motorbike on their way to their detachment in Barangay Kalanganan when fired upon by riding-in-tandem gunmen.

“Witnesses said they were tailing the victims from the city’s public market and opened fire from behind when they reached an isolated road in Barangay Kalanganan,” said Senior Supt. Rolly Octavio, city police director.

The 5th Army Special Forces is currently helping local authorities secure several tributaries crisscrossing the city that are being used by lawless elements as entry and exit points.

Bendanillo, who sustained gunshot wounds in various parts of his body, is undergoing medication at a government hospital here.

Octavio said investigators are still confirming intelligence reports that the suspects belonged to a BIFF hit squad.

“The BIFF is among the possible suspects,” Octavio told reporters. “We are still investigating.”

On Sunday night, another soldier, Corporal Ruel Dordas of the Army’s 33rd Infantry Battalion (IB) was killed after he and companion, Sgt. Julhaib Ajijul, was fired at while on their way back to their detachment. The duo had just completed a peacekeeping mission in a remote village of Lambayong, Sultan Kudarat.

Dordas died on the spot while Ajijul sustained injuries and brought by responding colleagues to a hospital in Tacurong City.

“I strongly condemn this dastardly act against our soldiers. We will strive hard to bring the suspects to the folds of the law,” Lt. Colonel Harold Cabunoc, 33rd IB commander, said.

Sultan Kudarat placed on alert after Koronadal bomb attack

From the Philippine News Agency (Apr 30): Sultan Kudarat placed on alert after Koronadal bomb attack

Authorities have been placed on alert following Sunday's bombing in nearby Koronadal City that hurt two civilians.

Senior Supt. James Gulmatico, the Sultan Kudarat police provincial director, has directed all municipal police chiefs to intensify police visibility in public places, establish more police checkpoints, and work with the Philippine Army.

“We are on alert,” Supt. Gulmatico said in a radio interview, following Sunday’s explosion at past 12 noon of an improvised bomb inside a parked pedicab beside the Catholic Church in Koronadal City.

Another bomb was deactivated in front of a convenience store along GenSan Drive. A suspected improvised explosive device that turned out to be spare parts for motorcycle was also detonated by bomb experts near a mall.

Sultan Kudarat is adjacent to Maguindanao where the suspected bombers operate. Chief Supt. Marcelo Morales, police director for Region 12, has earlier tagged the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) as behind the Koronadal bombing, as part of its diversionary tactic due to massive losses from military and police operations.

Morales said police and military intelligence agents have identified areas - where the BIFF have plotted to conduct diversionary operations outside Maguindanao. These areas include Tacurong City, Korondal City, Kidapawan City, Gen. Santos City. Among the reported targets are public markets, bus terminals and malls.

Morales has appealed to the public to remain vigilant as authorities expect more similar attacks in the future. “We need your cooperation, please immediately report suspicious persons and unattended boxes to the local police,” he said.

1 dead, 2 hurt in fresh fighting between military, NPA

From the Philippine News Agency (Apr 30): 1 dead, 2 hurt in fresh fighting between military, NPA

Photo courtesy of 10th Infantry Division

Fresh fighting between the government security forces and the New People’s Army (NPA) in a remote area in Asuncion town, Davao del Norte, has claimed the life of a soldier and wounded two others on Sunday afternoon.

Capt. Jerry Lamosao, spokesperson of the Army's 10th Infantry Division, was unable to disclose the names of the army casualties because their respective families have not been informed yet.

The encounter ensued after the 46th Infantry Battalion responded to information about the presence of armed men in the area, prompting the Army unit to conduct an operation. The encounter lasted about an hour.

Lamosao said the troops were able to recover eight high-powered firearms and one unexploded Improvised Explosive Device (IED) from the NPA rebels.

He said the armed men were the same rebels fleeing from another encounter with the 60th Infantry Battalion along the boundaries of Laak, Compostela Valley province and Asuncion, Davao del Norte.

Lt. Col Gilbert Ombos, commander of the 60th IB, said that while military operations are ongoing in areas threatened by the NPA, the Army remains open for NPA members who want to surrender.

“War has no victors, only victims. Winning without fighting is still the best option. The government is willing and ready to accept and help them (NPA members) return to their normal lives,” Col. Ombos said in a press statement.

Sayyaf gunmen seize 2 lady cops, 2 others in Sulu

From the Philippine News Agency (Apr 30): Sayyaf gunmen seize 2 lady cops, 2 others in Sulu

Troops have been deployed to track down and rescue four people, including two policewomen, seized by suspected Abu Sayyaf bandits in the province of Sulu, a top military official said Monday.

Brig. Gen. Cirilito Sobejana, Joint Task Force Sulu commander, identified the victims as PO3 Benierose Alvarez, PO1 Dinah Gumahad, Jakosalem Blas, and Faizal Ahidji.

Alvarez and Gumahad are both assigned with the Police Regional Office-9 (PRO-9).

Sobejana said the victims were aboard a tricycle driven by Blas when they were seized around 12:40 p.m. Sunday in Barangay Liang, Patikul, Sulu.

Sobejana said the victims came from the headquarters of the 45th Infantry Battalion in Barangay Buhanginan when flagged down by 11 Abu Sayyaf bandits led by Mujir Yada.

The military identified Yada as one of the sub-leaders of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) based in the province of Sulu.

Sobejana said Yada’s group forcibly brought the victims towards south of the place where they were flagged down.

“Rescue efforts are on progress,” he added.

He advised the public to take precautions, especially in isolated areas, “to preclude untoward incident to happen.”

He also urged the public to report to them through fastest means any sighting of lawless elements so that appropriate action can be taken.