Wednesday, May 16, 2018

DWDD: LONGING FOR FAMILY | CPP-NPA Terrorist Leader Surrendered to 36IB

From DWDD AFP Civil Relations Service Radio Website (May 15): LONGING FOR FAMILY  |  CPP-NPA Terrorist Leader Surrendered to 36IB

TAGO, Surigao del Sur (DWDD) – A Communist Terrorist Leader of Squad Dos, Platoon 2, Guerilla Front 21A of the North Eastern Mindanao Regional Committee (NEMRC) voluntarily surrendered to 36th Infantry “Valor” Battalion bringing along his M16 Rifle attached with M203 Grenade Launcher with two (2) magazines and (six) 40MM HE on May 8, 2018 at Headquarters, 36IB at Sitio Upper Mambago, Brgy Dayo-an, Tago, Surigao del Sur.


The CPP- NPA Terrorist Leader was identified as Boy Iligan alias ANDRES, male, 36 y/o, married with six (6) children, a Squad Leader of Squad Dos, Platoon 2, GFC21A of the North Eastern Mindanao Regional Committee (NEMRC).

Alias ANDRES decided to surrender because he had longed to be with his family and cannot bear the difficulties they have suffered while he was away.

“Misurender ko kay tungod sa akong pamilya ilabina sakong asawa nga gimahal nako og pagayo. Nagpasalamat ko og dako kay nahimong instrumento ang dakong kahigugma nako sa akong pamilya arun makalingkawas nako sa niaadtung pagka NPA nako”, Ka Andres said in a vernacular.

He revealed that the CNTs is weakening and getting smaller while adding that he experienced miserable life while inside the organization as he needs to endure less food and always on the run to evade government troops.


“nihatag pud og kakusgon sako nga ako munaog na gayod kay ako nakit-an nga nagkahinay og nagkagamay na kami. Nagpadasig pud kanako nga musurender ko kay ako nabati0an nga ming-naog kana ko nga makabalik nako sa sabakan sa balaod kay nadunggan nako sa ubos nga misurender naang ako mga amigo susama ni Bensio og laing kauban”, Andres added.

The army has intensified its combat operation since the implementation of Martial Law and tagging of President Duterte to the CPP-NPA as terrorist organization. This resulted to a total of thirty – three (33) CNTs who have voluntary surrendered with six (6) firearms gained to 36IB since March 2018.

LTC XERXES A TRINIDAD INF (GSC) PA, Commanding Officer of the 36IB, said that “Let’s give importance to our family. If they surrender, they can take care of their family and most importantly they will be able to give a better future for them. We are calling to all remaining CNT members to lay down your arms and surrender, not just for your own sake, but rather, for your own family and loved ones. Abandon your maligned armed struggle and help the government bring development and long and lasting peace in our community.” 36IB / MCAG

DWDD: FRUSTRATED | 15 NPA’s Militia ng Bayan surrender to 75IB

From DWDD AFP Civil Relations Service Radio Website (May 15): FRUSTRATED  |  15 NPA’s Militia ng Bayan surrender to 75IB

CAMP JAIME N FERRER SR., Bislig City (DWDD) – Fifteen (15) members of Militia Ng Bayan voluntarily surrendered to the joint effort of Community Support Team (CST) of Bravo Company and Intelligence Section of Bravo company of Army’s 75th Infantry “Marauder” Battalion (75IB) at Sitio San Isidro (1K) Brgy. Bunawan Brook, Bunawan, Agusan Del Sur on May 13, 2018.

The surrenderors were identified as Jimmy Blanco Also Known As James, Loreta Managbanag AKA Malou, Eldrin Alvarez AKA Paul, Alfonso Concha AKA Ponsoy, Ruthea Alvarez AKA Pats, Julie Malinao AKA Bhebs, Ronila Suriga AKA Okang, Avin Anumbay, AKA Blacky, Felipe Makiling Jr AKA Junior, Lorencia Makiling AKA Relay, Rolly Suriga, AKA Jnnior, Lolita Rusimo AKA Mae, Eddie Reyes AKA Yobe, Angelita Anumbay AKA Elgie and Teodorsio Malinao AKA Mer.

The surrender was a success through the continuous effort of the CST in the area in conducting information and dissemination on the plans and programs of the government with the collaboration of Local Government Units (LGUs) and Local Government Agencies (LGAs). One of this is the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program (ECLIP) that made up their minds to return to the folds of law.

Lieutenant Colonel Jaime R Datuin, Commanding Officer of 75IB warmly welcomed the members of MBs on their support from NPA terrorist to the government and their willingness to put an end on these insignificant threats and be partners of the government.

“I am encouraging the remaining members of the CPP-NPA-Terrrorist groups and other mass sympathizers to be enlightened and knew the lies and ways of deceptions of the NPA propaganda. There’s still hope and it’s not yet too late to give yourself a chance to start a new life. Your 75IB will give their best effort to support you through the Enhanced Comprehensive Integration Program of the government.” Datuin ended.

Likewise, Colonel Andres C Centilo, 401st Infantry Brigade Commander lauded the Community support Team, Tribal Leaders, LGUs and other peace stakeholders who join

Army Vision: “By 2028, a world-class Army that is a source of national pride”

Army Core Purpose: “Serving the people, Securing the land”

together to encourage the armed group to heed to the governments call for peace. May this recent returned of 15 members of NPA’s militia to the government will serve as an example to remaining NPA members especially of Guerilla Front 14 to follow suit in order to live in peace with their families. The NPAs are anti-people and destroying the future of your children and families while supporting the peace and development of the government will surely give your loveones a better future, ended Col Centino. 75IB Marauder / MCAG

DWDD: BALIKATAN 2018 | Combined Arms Live Fire Exercise (CALFEX)

From DWDD AFP Civil Relations Service Radio Website (May 15): BALIKATAN 2018  |  Combined Arms Live Fire Exercise (CALFEX)

CAMP GEN SERVILLANO AQUINO, Tarlac (DWDD) – The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the United States Armed Forces showcased their capabilities in combined arms live fire exercise (CALFEX) and joint operations.

CALFEX is the culmination of staff planning between the two (2) armed forces, which focuses on enhancing the AFP Crisis Action Planning Capability in the Maritime Security and Territorial Defense Operations.

During the exercise, the AFP, in any given scenario can conduct Actions on the Ground and in the Air to seize objectives held by enemy forces. The USAF being a treat ally of the Philippines, will support our forces through combined operations.

The Philippine contingent is comprised of the 72nd Division Reconnaisance Company (DRC), Mechanized Infantry Company, the Philippine Marines, 500th Engineering Combat Battalion, Army Artillery Battalion and the Philippine Air Force (PAF), while the USAF exercise participant consist of Charlie Company and Delta Company of the 1-21st IN Battalion, 25th Infantry Division, and Echo Company of Victor 2-8, US Marines and US Air Force. AES / Photos by Lovely Q Guillermo / MCAG

MILF: MNLF, MILF of Sulu hold Provincial Peace Summit on Bangsamoro convergence

Posted to the Moro Islamic Liberation Front Website (May 15): MNLF, MILF of Sulu hold Provincial Peace Summit on Bangsamoro convergence

IN PHOTO- Guests and Resource Speakers during the Sulu Provincial Summit on Moro Convergence held at MSU - Sulu Gym on May 12, 2018

The Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) and Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) of the Province of Sulu conducted a peace summit on Bangsamoro Convergence, and in support to the passage of Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) and Anti - Terrorism Campaign held at Mindanao State University (MSU) - Sulu Gymnasium, Jolo, Sulu on May 12, 2018.

The said event was organized by BASULTA Contact Group under the leadership of its Executive Director Benhur Usman with financial assistance from The Asia Foundation (TAF) and The Aus-Aid.

The Summit was attended by 200 participants mostly community leaders of MNLF, MILF, Professional and Youth sectors, women and traditional sectors from different Municipalities of the Province.

The activity aims to orient and update the Sulu populace on the ongoing peace process particularly the passage of BBL and build peace constituency that will support the Bangsamoro aspiration.

The resource speakers were unanimous in their contention that the passage of BBL is an antidote to terrorism and radicalism.

Acting Provincial Chairman Abdulmotalib Ismi of MILF Northern Sulu delivered a message of unity and solidarity of the two fronts.

He said, " This is now the time we have to unite as one Bangsamoro regardless of our affiliation. Now is the time we have to leave a legacy to our children, a harmonious relationship with our brothers in faith and humanity. "

The prominent personalities who attended were the following : Prof. Sahie Udjah, Head of MNLF Provincial Secretariat ; Hadji Mansur Pawaki - MNLF Jolo Municipal Chairman ; Alandonie Hassan, MNLF Lupah Sug Revolutionary Chairman; Hadji Cesar Alil - MILF Provincial Chairman, Central Sulu; Abdulmotalib Ismi - MILF Acting Provincial Chairman, Northern Sulu; Sitti Raida Ismi - Provincial Chair, MILF - SWC, Northern Sulu; MILF Base Commander Musackal Abbie, 117th Base Command of Sulu and Tawi - tawi; Dr. Hanbal Bara, Dean, Graduate School - MSU Sulu; Judge Muhusar Amil - President of Bangsamoro Professionals and other Sulu leaders of their own right.

Prof. Udjah, the MNLF Provincial Secretariat Head gave a message on convergence of all fronts.

He argued, " MNLF and MILF are the legitimate defenders of the Bangsamoro people. We are both fighting oppression. Let us support the passage of BBL to correct injustices."

Dean Dr. Bara of Mindanao State University on his part thanked the organizer of the summit and called for the Unity and Solidarity of all sectors by supporting the passage of the BBL.

The summit concluded by signing a covenant showing their unconditional support to peace process and passage of BBL.

IN PHOTO-Participants of Sulu Provincial Summit on Bangsamoro Convergence

MILF: House Joint Committee delivers majority votes on BBL-BTC version

Posted to the Moro Islamic Liberation Front Website (May 16): House Joint Committee delivers majority votes on BBL-BTC version

IN PHOTO- Members of House Joint Committee on BBL during the deliberation on the proposed law on May 15, 2018

QUEZON CITY - The House Joint Committee on Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) have delivered a majority vote on the proposed law drafted by the Bangsamoro Transition Commission (BTC) to pave the way for the approval of the committee report on Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) without amendments on Tuesday, May 15 here at the Batasan Pambansa, Quezon City.
The result of the voting were as follows: Committee on Local Government, voted 32-3; the Committee on Muslim affairs, voted 27-3; and the Special Committee on Peace, Unity and Reconciliation, voted 27-3.

However, before the joint committee concluded yesterday’s committee report session, BBL well-known critics Zamboanga 1st District Rep. Celso Lobregat, Lanao del Norte 1st District Rep. Mohammad Khalid Dimaporo and 2nd District Rep. Abdullah Dimaporo vehemently opposed the inclusion of Moro dominated areas in Lanao del Norte and Zamboanga City.

Among who voted “no” was Shernee Abubakar Tan of the Party List Kausug-Tausug.

Rep. Lobregat quoted and argued that what President Rodrigo Duterte was saying “the BBL will not pass in Congress” but one observer said during the committee session that Rep. Lobregat is blind and constant in his argument against the BBL.

It is recalled that President Duterte has reiterated his commitment during the turnover of hundreds of loose fire arms in Buluan, Maguindanao that he will resign if the BBL is not passed by May this year.

Lanao del Norte 1st District Rep. Dimaporo questioned the process of voting last April 16 when Deputy Speaker Rep. Bai Sandara Sema approved without amendments the HB 6475 authored by House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez.

Rep. Juan Pablo “Rimpy” P. Bondoc, Senior Deputy Majority Floor Leader said, they have gone trough the process as stipulated in the committee on rules of the house. “We did not muscle you or estoppel you,” he said, explaining why the house decision should be respected.

He said they must go to the given timeline with due process in order to avoid further delay on the passage of BBL.

House Majority Leader Rodolfo Fariñas said they hope to approve House Bill 6475 by May 30.

"Kailangang ma-approve namin itong BBL by May 30," Fariñas said.

Fariñas said all the concerns of the opposing camps will be heard in the upcoming all-party caucus on HB 6475, before the plenary deliberates on the bill.

The next meeting of the House of Representatives (HoR) after making explanation of their votes, the committee report would then be referred to the committee on rules and to schedule for plenary deliberations where HoR members who would like to raise concern on the BBL will be entertained.

The BBL is long overdue since the 16th Congress. It encountered so many challenges, and criticisms on its constitutionality, such as the 2015 Mamasapano fiasco, the 2017 Marawi Siege.

Yet, it hurdled the test of time, and in due time expected to be passed by congress under the Duterte administration so that once and for all the historical injustices committed against the Bangsamoro are addressed.

MILF: Editorial - Sending Mautes to Malaysia

Editorial posted to the Moro Islamic Liberation Front Website (May 16): Editorial - Sending Mautes to Malaysia

If the plan of government to send the Maute surrenders to Malaysia to study agriculture will push through, there is only one overarching explanation to this. President Rodrigo Roa Duterte is dead serious in giving peace all the chances to succeed, and, without saying, he is facing this group squarely. Otherwise, he would charge all of them in court, because a mere surrender does not take away liabilities in committing a crime.

The choice of Malaysia as training site for the surrenderers is perfect. They can learn many things from there, aside from agriculture. The people are mostly Muslims. Their costumes and traditions are like Moros. Despite getting their independence 11 years after the Philippines, Malaysia is far ahead in terms of development including rural and urban planning.

Perhaps, what is more astonishing here is how a 92-year-old former prime minister, who voluntarily resigned from office, managed to come back into politics without necessarily being a politician. Dr. Mahathir Mohammad had already bid goodbye to politics, but when things appeared wrong in his country, he still managed to call his people and they rallied around him. He is now the new Prime Minister of Malaysia.

The Duterte administration is pursuing a policy of talking to those who fight government, including those which are either branded extremist or bandits. Such policy even earns criticisms from many quarters, who chastised government for babying these criminals. Imagine, at some instances, calling the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) and now the Maute Group (MG) to peace talks? Set aside the National Democratic Front/Communist Party of the Philippines/New People’s Army, whose peace process with government has been off-and-on and off. To this day, both parties have hard time resuscitating back to life this ailing peace process.

This policy is laudable. It is practical and builds goodwill among men and communities. Few leaders, nay politicians, would dare do this, especially those who are obsessively legalistic.

It might appear at first glance, however, as a weakness, but seen in totality, it is greatness, because it puts the government in higher moral ground. Viewed in all other aspects, the government can never be an underdog.

However, while we praise the Duterte administration for this pragmatic approach, the fact remains that short term approach cannot exchange for long term solution. Palliatives, more often, complicate problem or create more problems.

Without addressing the main root of the insurgency in Mindanao, which is the historical injustices committed against the Bangsamoro people, no solution will ever hold. It might be true that the Maute Group still has remnants. But to us, their capacity to reappear and pose serious threats to government is remote. They are on the run, and they have no mass base to count on.

To us, threats can emerge from frustrations of people over lack of progress in addressing the historical injustices committed against the Bangsamoro people. In this regard, the passage of the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) which is currently under deliberation in Congress is the most immediate antidote to radicalism and formation of extremist groups in Mindanao.

NDF/NDF-Negotiating Panel: Statement on Elizalde Canete

NDF-Negotiating Panel propaganda statement posted to the National Democratic Front Website (May 13): Statement on Elizalde Canete

NDFP Negotiating Panel
13 May 2018

New People’s Army ​l​eader Elizalde Cañete alias Ka Jinggoy was arrested by military and police forces at the Don Carlos Doctors Hospital in Bukidnon province on May 12, 2018. (Photo from Philippines Defense Forces Forum Facebook page)

We, in the NDFP panel for the GRP-NDFP peace negotiations, view with great concern newspaper reports about an NPA leader, Elizalde Cañete, being arrested on May 12 while receiving treatment for wounds in Don Carlos Hospital in the province of Bukidnon. We remind the Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP) of its obligations under CARHRIHL (Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law) that the GRP and the NDFP have signed as the first substantive item in the agenda of the peace negotiations.

The pertinent provisions in the CARHRIHL are those in Part IV, Article 4, nos. 1 and 6, thus:

1. Persons hors de combat and those who do not take direct part in hostilities are entitled to respect for their lives, dignity, human rights, political convictions and their moral and physical integrity and shall be protected in all circumstances and treated humanely without any distinction founded on race, color, faith, sex, birth, social standing or any other similar criteria.

6. All persons deprived of their liberty for reasons related to the armed conflict shall be treated humanely, provided with adequate food and drinking water, and be afforded safeguards as regards to health and hygiene, and be confined in a secure place…On humanitarian or other reasonable grounds, such persons deprived of liberty shall be considered for safe release.

NDFP Negotiating Panel Chairperson Fidel V. Agcaoili
We are grateful to the Exodus for Justice and Peace (EJP) and its convenor, Bishop Hamuel Tequis, for calling on the GRP to release Cañete on humanitarian grounds and in line with efforts for the resumption of the peace negotiations between the GRP and the NDFP. The EJP has acted several times in the past as third party facilitator in the release of prisoners of war (POWs) by the NPA.

Bishop Tequis pointed out that the NPA has released GRP soldiers and policemen held as POWs. The GRP he said should reciprocate this gesture of goodwill.

We admonish the GRP to honor its commitments under CARHRIHL. Likewise, we warn the GRP that any harm done to Cañete can have adverse consequences to the efforts of both sides to resume the peace negotiations. It can jeopardize the back-channel talks for making preparations for the resumption of the stalled peace talks that have already reached an advanced stage.

Chairperson, Negotiating Panel
National Democratic Front of the Philippines

CPP/NPA-Ilocos Sur: 81st IBPA: Tagaparnuay ken tagarakurak ti fake news!

NPA-Ilocos Sur propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines Website (May 15): 81st IBPA: Tagaparnuay ken tagarakurak ti fake news!

Saniata Maglaya, Spokesperson
NPA-Ilocos Sur (Alfredo Cesar Command)

14 May 2018
Press Release

Nadagsen a konkondenaren ti Alfredo Cesar, Jr. Command – NPA Ilocos Sur ti 81st IBPA ken PNP iti panangpardaya da iti NPA Ilocos Sur a ti rinaut da iti kallabes a “shabu laboratory” ken “explosives laboratory” kanu iti bantay a paset ti Brgy. Kaliwakiw, Salcedo ket kampo kanu ti NPA.

Desperado unayen ti 81st IBPA nga agaramid ti rason tapno maipapilit da a mangipasdek ti kampo da iti sakop ti ili a Salcedo a nabayagen a gungun-uden da. Ngem kadaytoy nga ar-aramiden da, ad-adda a makapungtot laeng ti umili, ta ammo ti amin a taga-Salcedo ken kabangibang nga ili a daytoy parparbo laeng dagiti militar. Nakakatkatawa ta ammo ti amin a bumaryo ti kunkunaen da a “laboratoryo” ket nabayagen a nailaeg a simple a kallapaw ti mannalon nga agum-uma idiay a paset ken marakrakraken daytoy . Iti insayangkat da a sinsinan a raid, negatibo met ti resulta na, kalaksidan dagiti linabsing da pay nga Standard Operating Procedure.

Saan tayon a masdaaw nu iti sumarsaruno nga al-aldaw ket adda manen ti iparammag ti 81st IBPA a napasamak a labanan iti paset ti Salcedo kas iti inaramid da a sinsinan a labanan wenno fake encounter idiay surong ti Karayan Sigay idi August 4, 2017, ken Poblacion Norte, Salcedo ken Daligan, Sta. Cruz idi Disyembre 2017.

Total failure ti “war on drugs” ti rehimeng US-Duterte. Pilpiliten nga aturen ti 81st IBPA ti naperdin nga imahe ni Duterte babaen kadaytoy a peke a raid. Saanen a mailibak a dagiti kadadakkelan a druglords iti pagilian ket dagiti met laeng asideg kenni Duterte a nangangato ti saad da iti turay ken kakabiagan a pakairamanan ti mismo nga anak na a ni Vice Mayor Polong Duterte. Kabayatan na, addan nasurok a 14,000 a katao a kaaduan ket marigrigat, ken adu kadagitoy ket menor de edad ti nabiktima ti extra-judicial killings nga aramid ti death squad ni Duterte ken agdua a tawenen tay kunana a 3-6 a bulan a panangparmek na ti illegal drugs ngem agtultuloy latta daytoy ta saan met a madusdusa dagitoy pudno a druglords . Daytoy ket nakakaskas-ang a ladawan ti kinaawan ti hustisya iti pagilian.

Labanan ken rippuogen ti pasismo ti rehimeng US-Duterte!
Labanan ti “Oplan Kapayapaan” a maskara ti pasismo ti rehimeng US-Duterte!
Paayen ti plano ti 81st IBPA nga agkampo iti sakop ti ili a Salcedo!
Sumampa iti New Peoples Army!

CPP: Release Zaldy Cañete expeditiously like NPA releases its prisoners-of-war

Propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines Website (May 15): Release Zaldy Cañete expeditiously like NPA releases its prisoners-of-war

Communist Party of the Philippines

15 May 2018
Press Release

The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) demands the Duterte regime and its Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) to accord humane treatment to and expeditiously release wounded New People’s Army Red fighter Zaldy Cañete in the same way that the NPA considers captured soldiers as prisoners-of-war to be treated leniently and prompty released.

Cañete was captured last May 12 after police and military operatives placed him under arrest while he was in the Intensive Care Unit in a hospital in Don Carlos, Bukidnon. He was recovering from a brain surgery to treat a bullet injury he sustained in a firefight last May 10 in Kitaotao town. He was under the watch of his family and hospital doctors.

Cañete must be expeditiously released by the Duterte regime by force of its obligations under the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law (CARHRIHL) which stipulate that persons deprived of their liberty for reasons related to the armed conflict shall be considered for safe release on humanitarian or other grounds.

The release of captured combatants involved in an armed conflict is a humanitarian exercise practiced since World War II and enshrined in the Geneva Conventions, and which the NPA strictly observes.

Arson attempt foiled in Bukidnon

From the Sun Star-Cagayan de Oro (May 16): Arson attempt foiled in Bukidnon           

GOVERNMENT forces have foiled the attempt of alleged communist rebels to burn down the equipment of a construction company in Bukidnon, over the weekend.

In a statement, the military said they receive reports from the community that alleged members of the New People’s Army (NPA) have threatened to scorch the equipment owned by Ulticon Builders Incorporated in Cabanglasan, Bukidnon.

However, the plans were thwarted after troops from the 8th Infantry Battalion clashed with at least five communist insurgents at Sitio Miaray, Barangay Mandahican.

The military said the Maoist guerillas withdrew which led to the recovery of high powered guns including a carbine and garand rifle with ammunition.

No casualties on the government side during the brief gun battle.

The government troops remain in the area to conduct combat patrol.

"The success of our operation depends on two things. One of which is the unquestionable dedication of our soldiers, called to serve and protect the nation. Another factor is the information on the presence and whereabouts of the enemy coming from the Lumad themselves," Lieutenant Colonel Ronald Illana, commanding officer of the 8IB, said.

"With the efforts made by the tribal leaders in the area to report the location and activity of the enemy, they are entitled for remuneration for their contribution in line with President Rodrigo Duterte's proclamation encouraging Lumad to work hand-in-hand with the government to defend themselves and stand up for their right against oppression, persecution and abuses perpetrated by the CPP-NPA terrorists and by other threat groups," he added.

He said the office of the president has allocated funds as financial assistance to the indigenous people who would aid the government in eradicating the NPA or other threat groups in defense of their tribal community.

Severed finger found among firearms left behind by fleeing NPAs

From the Manila Bulletin (May 15): Severed finger found among firearms left behind by fleeing NPAs

Troops recovered a severed index finger among the cache of arms left behind by retreating New People’s Army (NPA) terrorists, whose attack on a militia patrol base was repulsed by the military in Sinacungan, Esperanza, Agusan del Sur, early Monday.

According to Brig. Gen. Franco Nemesio Gacal, Commander of 402nd Infantry Brigade, troops recovered the index finger, believed to be from a wounded terrorist, alongside an M16 rifle and an M203 grenade launcher during the clearing operations two hours later.

The incident threatened to delay the Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan elections in the area, until troops arrived to thwart the NPA threat.

There were no government casualties.

Troops were able to recover one M16 rifle and one M203 grenade launcher with an index finger believed to be that of a wounded NPA.

The military was also able to scuttle an attempt by the NPA to burn construction equipment in Sitio Miaray, Barangay Mandahican in Cabanglasan, Bukidnon, according to Lt. Tere Ingente, chief of the Public Affairs Office (PAO) of the Northeastern and Northern Mindanao Fourth Infantry (Diamond) Division (5th ID) yesterday.

Ingente told The Manila Bulletin that troops of the Eighth Infantry Battalion (8th IB) engaged an undetermined number of Communist terrorists, who were about to set ablaze some construction equipment in Miaway area.

“From the information revealed by the locals, the NPA terrorists threatened to burn the equipment belonging to Ulticon Builders Incorporated (UBI) in the area,” stressed the 4th ID PAO officer.

Group pleads for release of NPA leader nabbed in hospital

From the Philippine Daily Inquirer (May 16): Group pleads for release of NPA leader nabbed in hospital

WOUNDED REBEL Zaldy Cañete, alias Ka Jinggoy, during the 48th founding anniversary of Communist Party of the Philippines on Dec. 26, 2016—BARRY OHAYLAN
A group supporting peace talks between the government and communist rebels pleaded for the release on humanitarian grounds of a rebel leader captured while he was getting treatment for gunshot wounds in a hospital in Bukidnon.

In a statement, Exodus for Justice and Peace (EJP) said releasing Zaldy Cañete, alias Ka Jinggoy, would “help build the track of peace talks.”

Aglipayan Bishop Hamuel Tequies, one of the leaders of EJP, said EJP members saw pictures of Cañete that showed the rebel leader to be critically wounded.

Cañete, reports said, was wounded in a clash with government soldiers in Kitaotao, Bukidnon province, last week and was taken to a hospital in Don Carlos town, also in Bukidnon.

Geneva Convention

Tequies said the Geneva Convention and International Humanitarian Law (IHL) protect “wounded combatants from attacks as they are incapable of engaging in combat.”

Those wounded in combat, Tequies said, should be “accorded rights to medical care.”

Capturing Cañete “would constitute a serious breach” of the Geneva Convention, which governs the conduct of opponents in war, and IHL, an international law, Tequies said.

Tequies said his group believed that if the military released Cañete, the effort to “humanize the dire impact of civil war on human lives and, more importantly, to bring forth confidence in the peace talks” would be one step closer to reality.

General’s order

But Maj. Ezra Balagtey, spokesperson for the military’s Eastern Mindanao Command (Eastmincom) based here, said Cañete was not being held in prison.

Was he deprived of medical attention?” said Balagtey.

He said Lt. Gen. Benjamin Madrigal Jr., Eastmincom chief, had given a directive for the military to help Cañete get medical treatment.

The rebel leader, who replaced the late New People’s Army (NPA) commander Leoncio Pitao, alias Commander Parago, has not been removed from the hospital, Balagtey said.

“He is not being incarcerated,” the military spokesperson added.

In a separate statement, NPA in Southern Mindanao questioned the arrest of Cañete.

Rigoberto Sanchez, NPA regional spokesperson, said the capture of Cañete while the rebel leader sought treatment at a hospital was “treacherous.”

The military considered Cañete as a major catch since he succeeded Pitao, who was killed in a clash in Paquibato District here in 2015, as head of NPA’s Pulang Bagani Company 1.

String of attacks

The NPA unit operates in Bukidnon and Davao del Norte provinces and Davao City.

Balagtey said Cañete faced a string of murder and arson charges due to his group’s attacks on government forces, civilians and businesses in Davao City, particularly the spate of attacks against Lapanday Foods Corp. last year that resulted in over P1 billion in losses and the death of fish vendor Larry Buenafe.

The Compostela Valley native was first arrested in 2010 after getting wounded in a clash with the 3rd Scout Rangers Battalion in Laak town, Compostela Valley.

Three of his followers died in that fighting.

“However, he was able to jump bail sometime in 2013 and went back to the terror group,” Balagtey said.

“The arrest of Jinggoy and his eventual prosecution will now give justice to the victims of his many atrocities,” Madrigal said.

Army sarge killed in clash with NPAs

From the Manila Bulletin (May 15): Army sarge killed in clash with NPAs

General Nakar, Quezon — An army sergeant was killed in a 30-minute gunbattle with New People’s Army (NPA) guerrillas in this town last Monday afternoon.

The Southern Luzon Command (SOLCOM) reported the death of one “Sergeant Samillano” who was part of the 2nd Jungle Fighter Company – a platoon from the army’s 80th Infantry of the Battalion – that encountered about 15 armed NPA terrorists at 3:45 p.m. Monday.

The troopers, led by 2nd Lieutenant Candog, engaged the Communist NPA Terrorists (CNTs) in a between Sitio Libutan and Sitio Panagsaan in Barangay Umiray, here, while on a mission to verify civilian reports of NPA forces converging in the village.

“The exchange of gunfire lasted for 30 minutes that resulted to the death of one of the troops, while (there are) undetermined number of casualties on the scampering enemies based on the traces of bloodstains,” said Brigadier General Arnulfo Marcelo Burgos the Commander of the Army’s 202nd Brigade.

Burgos said two guerrillas were captured following the encounter.

15 NPAs yield to AFP troops in Agusan

From the Manila Bulletin (May 16): 15 NPAs yield to AFP troops in Agusan

Fifteen members of Milisya ng Bayan (MB) of the Communist New People’s Army Terrorists (CNTs) voluntarily surrendered to the Community Support Team (CST) of the Army Forces of the Philippines (AFP) in Sitio (sub-village) San Isidro, Barangay Bunawan Brook, Bunawan, Agusan del Sur, the ground Army area commander reported Wednesday.


Col. Andres Centino, commanding officer of the Army’s 401st Infantry (Unity) Brigade said the surrendered CNTs belonged to Guerilla Front Committee 14 (GFC 14) of the CPP-NPA Northeastern Mindanao Regional Committee (NEMRC).

Their return to the fold of the government came following the enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program or CLIP of the government, claimed the 401st Brigade commander.

Documentation process is now ongoing for the surrenderees for them to avail of livelihood and other support programs being offered by the government through the CLIP program, he said.

“Their (CNTs) surrender is great model for their remaining comrades-in-arms who are still running in the mountains to come down and avail of the government’s CLIP and peace and development program,” Col. Centino said.

The hardship in the mountain, lack of logistical support, sickness and their dwindling numbers also forced them to surrender, he said.

“They want also to test and avail of the government’s offer of peace and development program, and above all they want already to leave in a peaceful life with their families,” the 401st Brigade commander added.

As of press time, the local government unit and other concerned line government agencies were assisting in the processing of their (CNTs) CLIP assistance from the government.

The former CNTs will be presented to Northeastern and Northern Mindanao 4th Infantry (Diamond) Division chief Maj. Gen. Ronald C. Villanueva, regional Army spokesperson Lt. Tere Ingente also said.

Firefight disrupts Bohol town fiesta

From the Philippine Daily Inquirer (May 15): Firefight disrupts Bohol town fiesta

A firefight between government troops and alleged members of the NPA took place in Sitio Ilaud in Barangay Campagao, Bilar town, Bohol on Tuesday morning. Because of the incident, most residents cancelled their fiesta celebration on. Leo Udtohan/Inquirer Visayas

BILAR, Bohol – A firefight between government troops and armed men believed to be New People’s Army (NPA) rebels erupted here on Tuesday morning, hours after the May 14 elections, and disrupted preparations for the town fiesta.

Amelita Decasa, 47, and her husband Gil, 41, said they woke up early to prepare food for the town fiesta, but they heard gunshots at around 5:05 a.m. in Sitio Ilaud, Barangay Campagao.

The Decasas and other families left the area soon after.

Col. Ignacio Madriaga, commander of the 302nd Infantry Brigade, said the troops were conducting post-election operations in the area when they responded to reports that there were armed men roaming around the village asking for food.

He clarified that the encounter did not affect the elections in the village, as the winners have been proclaimed before the encounter.

The firefight started at around 5:05 a.m. and ended at 5:54 a.m. No casualties have been reported from either side, though two soldiers were reportedly hit in the hand and cheek.

Madriaga said the NPA would always try to re-establish their presence in the province. “Bohol will always be threatened, they will always try to regain their influence here,” he said.

He added that the armed men were out to gain sympathy from residents, reconnect with old comrades, and ultimately re-establish a stronghold in the province, which they enjoyed in the 1990s.

Madriaga revealed that the 14 armed men were security forces of NPA leader Domingo Compoc, a native of Barangay Dagohoy in Bilar town, who is wanted for murder and rebellion.

The government has offered a reward of P2.6 million for his capture, “dead or alive.”

Madriaga said Compoc was spotted by several concerned citizens roaming around the Bilar hinterlands urging old NPA comrades to rejoin the rebel group a few days before the town fiesta.

“I think nandun siya kanina kasama yung (I think he was with the) 14 armed men,” he said. The residents’ report led to the hour-long firefight on Tuesday.

Madriaga said the villagers were allowed to return to their houses on Tuesday afternoon.

“Okay na…they are safe na kaya tuloy na ang fiesta (It’s now safe so the fiesta will push through),” he said.

The Philippine National Police (PNP) in Bilar have set up checkpoints to ensure safety of the residents during the festivities.

Bohol has been considered insurgency-free for over a decade. Last February, alleged NPA members visited several houses in a remote village in Sevilla town in an apparent effort to gain the sympathy of villagers.

Despite various reports of NPA activities, Madriaga said the province still meets the requirements needed to be considered insurgency-free.

Kidnapped policewomen in Sulu released – Albayalde

From Rappler (May 16): Kidnapped policewomen in Sulu released – Albayalde

 PNP chief Oscar Albayalde says they are now with Sulu Governor Sakur Tan

'RELEASED'. Police Officer 2 Benierose Alvares and Police Officer 1 Dinah Gumahad are kidnapped in Sulu. Sourced photo

'RELEASED'. Police Officer 2 Benierose Alvares and Police Officer 1 Dinah Gumahad are kidnapped in Sulu. Sourced photo

The two policewomen who have been kidnapped in Sulu are now released, Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Oscar Albayalde announced on Wednesday, May 16.

"The regional director there [confirmed] and said that they are now with the personnel of Governor Sakur Tan. The two women are now on their way to the residence of the governor,

Albayalde said in a chance interview with police reporters.

Earlier, Albayalde announced that the abductors – an unnamed group suspected to be related with the terrorist Abu Sayyaf Group – demanded P5 million for the cops' release.

More to follow.

Abu Sayyaf frees 2 police officers in Sulu

From the Philippine Daily Inquirer (May 16): Abu Sayyaf frees 2 police officers in Sulu

Two kidnapped female police officers had been freed by the Abu Sayyaf in Sulu province.

Chief Supt. Billy Beltran, Western Mindanao police director, said on Wednesday that PO1 Dinah Gumahad was freed on Tuesday.

PO3 Bennie Rose Alvarez, Beltran said, was released Wednesday at 10:25 a.m. in Barangay Samak in Talipao town.

He said he still had no additional details on the release of the two police officers, who were kidnapped on April 29 in Patikul town.

AFP breaking generational link to avert another Marawi siege

From the Manila Bulletin (May 15): AFP breaking generational link to avert another Marawi siege

Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Chief of Staff General Carlito Galvez expressed belief that it would take years before another siege similar to what happened in Marawi City almost a year ago will occur.

In this June 9, 2017, file photo, black smoke from continuing military air strikes rises above a mosque in Marawi city. (AP Photo/Aaron Favila, File / MANILA BULLETIN FILE PHOTO)

Galvez, who was then the chief of the AFP’s Western Mindanao Command (WestMinCom) during the height of the war which left more than a thousand people – militants, soldiers and civilians dead – made the remark following a press briefing at Camp Aguinaldo, Quezon City.

Members of the Maute Group and slain Abu Sayyaf leader Isnilon Hapilon led the siege which took place on May 23, 2017. Marawi City was liberated five months later.

“I believe ano yun, it will, it would take years for the Marawi incident to happen again…That’s why ang ginagawa namin ngayon (what we are doing right now) we are breaking the generational link or generational process so that we can counter the Isis narrative,” Galvez said.

Galvez, at the same time, said that members of the Abu Sayyaf especially the Maute Group suffered a great deal of loss following their defeat from the hands of the government forces.

He said the militants even tried to regroup by recruiting new members but so far they have failed.

“Ang nakikita natin ngayon (What we are seeing now) they have been weakened, greatly weakened, with the success that we had in Marawi,” Galvez said.

Galvez said following the siege there were also massive loose firearms turned over by residents and local officials in Lanao del Sur. More than 2,000 firearms have been turned-over so far.

Galvez said despite the militants’ defeat, the military is not staying complacent and letting their guard down in efforts of preventing the enemy from staging future attacks.

NPA violates self-imposed truce for barangay, SK polls

From Malaya Business Insight (May 16): NPA violates self-imposed truce for barangay, SK polls

NEW People’s Army rebels violated the ceasefire they declared for the barangay and Sanguniang Kabataan elections in Eastern Mindanao by attacking an Army detachment in Esperanza town in Agusan del Sur during the voting on Monday.

No one was killed or injured in the attack but it delayed the election in barangay Sinacungan, said Maj. Ezra Balagtey, spokesman of the military’s Eastern Mindanao Command based in Davao City.

Balagtey said an undetermined number of rebels attacked the detachment, manned by Cafgu forces, around 4 a.m. Monday. He said the two sides traded fire for two hours, until the insurgents withdrew.

Balagtey said the attacked “caused the delay of the voting but the troops immediately restored normalcy and allowed the start of elections in the area a little bit late than the supposed time of opening.”

During clearing operations, Balagtey said soldiers recovered at the encounter site an M16 rifle and one M203 grenade launcher with an index finger believed to be that of a wounded NPA rebel.

Before the election, NPA-Northern Eastern Mindanao Region spokesman Ariel Montero said they observed ceasefire in the region from May 14 up to 18 “in deference to the people’s right to vote freely.”

Eastmincom chief Lt. Gen. Benjamin Madrigal lashed at the NPA for violating their own truce.

In Quezon, a soldier was killed following a clash with NPA rebels who were said to be planning to sabotage the elections in Barangay Umiray in General Nakar town around 3:45 p.m. Monday.

Capt. Patrick Jay Retumban, spokesman of the Army’s 2nd Infantry Division in Rizal, said troops from the 202nd Brigade were deployed to conduct operations after receiving reports that a group of rebels was planning to sabotage the election in the barangay.

Retumban said soldiers caught up with about 15 rebels, leading to a 30-minute firefight. He said the rebels withdrew but were again engaged by soldiers in a five-minute clash about an hour later.

A soldier died in the first firefight. The military declined to name the soldier, pending the notification of his family.

On the NPA side, Retumban said two of the rebels were captured during the first encounter. Soldiers also recovered two shotguns, backpacks and rebel documents. 

Retumban said other rebels may have been killed or injured “based on traces of blood.”

He said the election process in the barangay proceeded as scheduled despite the clash.

In Maguindanao, AFP spokesman Col. Edgard Arevalo said two M203 grenade explosions occurred in Datu Unsay and Paglat towns before noon and before 3 p.m. Monday, respectively, delaying the elections.