Sunday, April 26, 2020

37 clashes recorded since start of ECQ

From the Philippine Star (Apr 27, 2020): 37 clashes recorded since start of ECQ (Michael Punongbayan)

The military recorded 37 armed clashes with New People’s Army (NPA) guerrillas, Abu Sayyaf bandit group and other lawless elements since the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) was implemented nationwide.

The attacks occurred from March 16 to April 23, which irked President Duterte who said the communists are adding to the problem that resulted from the health crisis.

“We are trying to balance the mission between supporting the PNP in efforts to keep everyone safe from COVID-19 and maintaining security and stability, which are both equally important, and yet the rebels are launching attacks,” Duterte said yesterday, referring to the Philippine National Police.

“Soldiers should stay alert even as they are conducting ECQ support operations. They must be ready at all times in case the enemies strike,” he added.

Supporting law enforcers in ECQ implementation and getting ready to be deployed when needed are both priorities of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), according to Col. Ramon Zagala, spokesman for the Philippine Army.

Zagala dismissed claims the COVID-19 response is being militarized. He said the soldiers are following civilian authorities including the PNP.

“The PNP and the AFP, especially us the Philippine Army, follow a civilian-led government, which is the President and our local government units,” Zagala said.

He said the Army deployed 12,600 troopers, specifically for ECQ duties to support the PNP nationwide.
‘Don’t expect ceasefire’

Due to continuous attacks against the security forces, the communists should not expect the government to declare a ceasefire during the quarantine period, Malacañang said yesterday.

President Duterte declared a ceasefire with the rebels from March 19 to April 15 to allow the police and the military to implement quarantine protocols imposed to contain the COVID-19.

The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) declared its own ceasefire, which started on March 26.

The CPP extended the ceasefire until April 30 after the government prolonged the Luzon-wide quarantine until the same day.

The government has not reciprocated the ceasefire extension.

“The ceasefire declared by the government is finished and it was not yet renewed. With the continuous attacks by the NPA, they should not expect an extension. That is a decision to be made by the President,” presidential spokesman Harry Roque told radio station dzBB yesterday.

The military said the NPA, the armed wing of the communists group, committed atrocities during the ceasefire period, including in Rizal, Surigao, and Davao City.

The latest incident attributed to the rebels was the assault against government personnel in Masbate on Friday.

Duterte has threatened to declare martial law if the NPA continues to launch offensives and disrupt the government’s relief efforts.

Roque lamented that the guerrillas attacked even those who were involved in the distribution of aid to communities affected by the quarantine.

Troopers from the Army’s 20th Infantry Battalion (IB) overran a rebel camp following a brief firefight in Catubig, Northern Samar on Saturday.

Lt. Col. Juan Gullem, chief of the 20th IB, said no casualties were reported from both sides.

The soldiers were responding to reports about the disruption of the distribution of financial aid to residents in the area.

The rebels retreated toward the mountain, abandoning their camp, which can accommodate at least 40 people.

The camp had a multi-purpose hall, 11 bunkers, 19 makeshift tents, comfort room, kitchen and three guard posts.

Troopers recovered from the camp several rifles, improvised explosive devices, a grenade, phone, backpacks, medical supplies, and subversive documents, Gullem said.

Short-lived freedom for five

From The Star Online (Apr 27, 2020): Short-lived freedom for five (By MUGUNTAN VANAR)

Scary times: A screencap showing Abu Sayyaf members threatening to behead the kidnapped Indonesian fishermen who were taken from the sea border of Tambisan in Lahad Datu.

KOTA KINABALU: Five Sandakan-based Indonesian fishermen were released by Abu Sayyaf captors only to be held again by another group that assisted their release.
Regional intelligence sources said intermediaries for families of the Indonesian hostages had settled the demands of a key Abu Sayyaf kidnap group, led by sub-commander Apo Mike, who then released them to Abu Sayyaf-linked middlemen.

However, the source said that the middlemen were now holding the hostages, demanding extra payment.

The source said negotiations were now being carried out with a Jolo-based middlemen, led by a woman, once closely associated with a powerful Moro leader.

As of now, the source said the middlemen were demanding additional costs incurred for the release.

The five Indonesians were working for a Sandakan-based fishing company.

They are the trawler’s skipper Arsyad Dahlan, 41, La Baa, 32, Riswanto Hayano, 27, Edi Lawalopo, 53, and Syarizal Kastamiran, 29.

All five were kidnapped at the sea border of Tambisan area in Lahad Datu on Jan 17 this year.

About one month ago, the gunmen had released a video, threatening to behead the five if no ransom payments were made.

They were reportedly asking for RM3mil to RM4mil during calls to family members.

It was not known if any ransom was paid to the Apo Mike gang before the five were handed over.

The source also said in a separate deal, another key Abu Sayyaf commander Idang Susukan, who has been responsible for a spate of cross-border kidnapping in Sabah, has “surrendered” to Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) leader Nur Misuari.

Currently, Idang is said to be in Misuari’s base in Jolo and hoping for Misuari to cut a deal for him with Manila.

“So far, there is no indication whether Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte’s administration is prepared to give a deal to Idang, ” the source said.

Idang was the key kidnapper holding Malaysian Bernard Then, who was beheaded on Nov 17,2015.

He is widely believed to have been injured and under the refuge of the MNLF.

Duterte had ordered for the wiping out of the Abu Sayyaf group, led by Hajan Sawadjaan.

However, the Philippine army has been bogged down under heavy fire from the Abu Sayyaf flank, led by Commander Radulan Sahiron, who has killed at least a dozen soldiers, including beheading four in heavy fighting in Jolo since mid April.

According to intelligence sources, there were little signs of Manila getting the upper hand any time soon though they managed to neutralise several Abu Sayyaf gunmen, including Vikram, said to be the grandson of Radulan.

Both Radulan and Sawadjaan remain in control of their strong base of Patikul in the Jolo island.

Eastern Sabah Security Command commander Deputy Comm Datuk Hazani Ghazali said they remained alert for any possibility of gunmen running into Sabah waters.

Senior Abu Sayyaf leader surrenders in Sulu

From the Philippine Star (Apr 25, 2020): Senior Abu Sayyaf leader surrenders in Sulu (John Unson)

Abu Sayyaf leader Mawallil Saiyadi agreed to surrender after a series of backchannel talks with the local police and the mayor of Parang, Sulu. via The STAR/John Unson

A senior Abu Sayyaf leader in Sulu surrendered Saturday and renounced his membership with the group in the presence of police and military officials.
Mawallil Saiyadi also turned in two assault rifles, one fitted with a 40-mm grenade launcher
, as he promised to reform for good before local officials in Parang town in Sulu province.

In a statement Sunday, the Police Regional Office-Bangsamoro Autonomous Region said Saiyadi yielded through the efforts of Parang Mayor Alkhadar Loong, Police Maj. Nicanor Lambino of the municipal police, and officials of the Philippine Army.

The simple surrender rite, held at the municipal government building of Parang, was witnessed by officials from the Army’s 1102nd Infantry Brigade and the Sulu provincial police office.

Local officials said Saiyadi is leader of an Abu Sayyaf group that figured in deadly encounters in the past five years with pursuing military forces.

The PRO-BAR said the local government unit of Parang will help provide rehabilitation support needed in reintroducing Saiyadi into mainstream society.

Duterte Threatens To Declare Martial Law; Accuses Rebels Of Disrupting Aid Deliveries

Posted to the Eurasia Review (Apr 26, 2020): Duterte Threatens To Declare Martial Law; Accuses Rebels Of Disrupting Aid Deliveries (By Luis Liwanag and Froilan Gallardo, Benar News)

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte threatened to impose martial law to quell communist rebels he accused of harassing troops escorting aid and food deliveries for residents under coronavirus quarantine, as he extended a pandemic lockdown in Manila and nearby cities until May 15.

In a late Thursday meeting of a top-level inter-agency task force on COVID-19, Duterte agreed to extend an “enhanced community quarantine” in high-risk areas. Portions of the meeting were broadcast Friday morning.

“I am now warning everybody and putting the police and the AFP on notice, I might declare martial law and there will be no turning back,” Duterte said, referring to the Armed Forces of the Philippines.

The current lockdown covers the entire island of Luzon, home to about 60 million people, about half of the nation’s population. The quarantine was supposed to end by April 30, but would now be extended until May 15 to contain coronavirus infections, he said.

Duterte said he has a standing order for security forces during his presidency to “kill all” members of the communist New People’s Army (NPA) and its “legal fronts” that he said were also extorting money from businessmen.

“You better hide,” Duterte said, referring to communist rebels.

The president accused guerrillas of attacking aid deliveries, but did not mention a specific incident. However, earlier this week, the military said an NPA unit attacked government forces who were distributing cash aid in the northern province of Aurora, killing two soldiers.

In a statement sent to BenarNews on Friday, the NPA denied Duterte’s allegation about the guerrilla attack, describing it as an “outrageous lie” to “pass the blame for his own massive failure in responding to the COVID-19 crisis and to justify his further use of authoritarian power.”

“The people should condemn Duterte’s recent threat of declaring martial law,” it said. “The regime’s negligent, ineffective and tyrannical ways in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic have brought Duterte deeper in political quagmire.”

The Philippine communists have been waging one of Asia’s longest running insurgencies, which began in 1969. Thousands of civilians and fighters from both sides have died in the fighting.

Duterte, a self-described leftist, previously suspended peace talks with the NPA’s political wing, after accusing the guerrillas of launching attacks despite the negotiations.

Killing policy

Killing is an oft-repeated refrain by Duterte and a bedrock of his anti-crime efforts. About 6,000 suspected dealers and drug addicts have been killed since he took office in 2016, according to government figures while activists and rights groups claim the number could be much higher.

Earlier this month, Duterte said police can “shoot to kill” anyone who fought back or insisted on crossing checkpoints. His statement was touched off by an impromptu rally staged by residents of an urban poor community that had not received promised aid by the government. Twenty-one were arrested, but subsequently released on bail.

“The COVID-19 will not end. It will be here and it will stay until kingdom come,” the president said in his rambling address, adding that the Philippines would be lucky to be among those picked for an early vaccine trial should scientists find an immediate cure.

On Friday, the Philippines reported 211 new coronavirus infections, bringing its cumulative cases to 7,192. Fifteen new fatalities were also added, taking the nation’s death toll to 477.

Globally, more than 2.7 million people have been infected with the death toll topping 193,000 as of Friday, according to data compiled by disease experts at U.S.-based Johns Hopkins University.
World Bank, ADB offer additional aid

Meanwhile, multilateral lending agencies the World Bank and the Manila-based Asian Development Bank (ADB) announced new loans to the Philippines to help the government sustain its COVID-19 response.

The loans would go to cash subsidies to some 18 million poor households, as well as help boost the Southeast Asian nation’s health-care system.

“The assistance is our largest budget support loan to the Philippines ever and reflects our strong commitment to providing cornerstone assistance swiftly and effectively to help the country mitigate the pandemic’s devastating impact on Filipinos, particularly the poor and vulnerable, including women,” ADB president Masatsugu Asakawa said in a statement Friday.

“Amid a global pandemic, the most vulnerable are developing countries, especially those with densely populated cities such as the Philippines,” he said of his agency’s U.S. $1.5 billion loan to the Philippines.

A day earlier, the World Bank announced a $100 million loan to fund the country’s “urgent healthcare needs in the wake of the pandemic.” The money would go to the health department’s crisis response efforts, it said.

Alleged NPA gunmen wound cop, LGU official in Masbate attack

From GMA News Online (Apr 25, 2020): Alleged NPA gunmen wound cop, LGU official in Masbate attack

A police officer and a local government official were wounded after alleged Communist Party of the Philippines-New People's Army gunmen attacked a police vehicle Friday afternoon in Masbate's Monreal town.

According to a Saturday statement from the Philippine National Police, Department of Social Welfare and Development officials and LGU employees were heading back after distributing Social Amelioration Program aid in a local community when they were shot at by unidentified suspects along the boundary of Barangays Real and Rizal.

Police Corporal Romel A. Bartola was hit on the left side of his head and back, while LGU employee Ricky Canares was shot in the back.

The victims were rushed to the rural health unit for medical treatment and both were in stable condition.

The PNP strongly condemned the “inhumane and treacherous” attack by the CPP-NPA against the police officers and civilians who were merely performing their duties during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The attack was likewise condemned by the Philippine military, with Joint Task Force Bicolandia and 9th Infantry Division commander Major General Fernando Trinidad calling the ambush a “dastardly act.”

Trinidad added that the shooting was a desperate attempt by the NPA to demonstrate that they could still launch attacks despite the heavy casualties and losses they suffered during recent encounters with elements of the 2nd Infantry Battalion.

According to the military, the NPA suffered severe casualties during an April 19 clash in Barangay Salvacion, during which 16 high powered guns, anti-personnel mines, and different subversive equipment and supplies were seized.

MILF: Message of MILF Chairman, also BARMM Chief Minister, Ahod "Al Haj Murad" Ebrahim on the Holy Month of Ramadhan

Posted to the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) Facebook Page (Apr 24, 2020): Message of MILF Chairman, also BARMM Chief Minister, Ahod "Al Haj Murad" Ebrahim on the Holy Month of Ramadhan

Image may contain: text

NDF/Sison: On the current character of the Philippine economy

Jose Maria Sison propaganda statement posted to the National Democratic Front Philippines (NDFP or NDF) Website (Apr 26, 2020): On the current character of the Philippine economy

By Jose Maria Sison

Economists and statisticians of the Philippine reactionary state and the IMF claim that the Philippines is a “newly-industrialized country” or an “emerging market”. The illusion of industrial development is conjured mainly by understating the share of agriculture in production output and employment and overstating the shares of industry and services, especially the latter, which are not founded on Philippine industrial development.

Underdevelopment, Unemployment and Mass Poverty
In fact, under the neoliberal policy for the last four decades, the underdeveloped pre-industrial and semifeudal character of the Philippine economy has been aggravated and deepened by making it more consumption-oriented and dependent on imported equipment and consumer manufactures, mounting foreign debt, volatile flows of portfolio investments, foreign exchange remittances of migrant workers and the income of call centers.

The GDP for 2019 is USD 376 billion. Divide this with the population of 109 million to get the GDP per capita. The GDP shares by sectors as of 2018 are supposedly as follows: agriculture 7.4%, industry 34 % and services, 58.6 %. The labor force of 45 million is distributed as follows: services 58.9 %, agriculture 22.0 % and industry 19.1%. These figures for sector outputs and employment are unreliable to say the least and need to be corrected by further research.

Dividing the GDP by the population to get the GDP per capita and understating the number of poor people at 16.6 %by using only USD 3.20/day to set the poverty line are a sneaky way of covering up the gross inequality in which the foreign monopoly corporations take their superprofits and the less than 1% of the population, who are the big compradors and landlords, take most of the pie at the expense of more than 90 % of the population.

The reactionary government claims that the rate of unemployment is only 4.5 %. But some of the officials admit that around 10 million of the labor force is unemployed. That’s 22 % of the total labor force of 45 million. Add those 10 to 12 million migrant workers (excluding the undocumented or noncontractual) who have gone abroad to look for jobs. We can say that nearly 50 % of the labor force is unemployed.

The Agricultural Sector and the Peasantry
The share of agriculture at only 7.4 per cent of the estimated GDP for 2020 is too small. The peasants, landlords and the merchants do not declare fully the market value of the agricultural product. Statisticians work mainly on estimates, aerial reconnaissance of farms and limited precise data. It must also be taken into account that most of the food crop does not reach the market because it is consumed by the peasants themselves. Swidden farming, backyard animal husbandry, localized fishing, handicrafts, carpentry, intra-community peddling and other sideline occupations are also not taken into account.

The share of agriculture in employment is supposed to be only 22 per cent of the labor force of 45 million. Even by the official statistics, employment in agriculture still accounts for more than 53 per cent in relation to that in the industry sector as the other basic productive sector. There are supposed to be only 10 million Filipino farmers. It is unclear as to how this figure has been arrived at and whether it refers only to heads of farming households. It is obviously a false figure because it is surpassed even by the number of migrant Filipino workers abroad who are estimated at 10 to 12 million. We know for a fact that peasant households, including children who are 10 years old or even younger, work as a productive unit on the farm.

The average size of the peasant family or household is larger than the national average of 4.4 members per family. There should be at least 44 million peasants. The peasants cannot be counted as if they were workers formally employed individually and then put to assembly line work in factories. It is a matter of necessity that a peasant household works as a collective and attends to farming and some sideline occupations.

Entire peasant households or families fall under the category of a social class on the basis of their means of livelihood and other related criteria. That is also true in the case of families belonging to other classes, unless the individual member leaves the class in a certain way.

This is an important point in the class analysis of the population in view of the systematic attempt to reduce the number of peasants. A member of a peasant family remains in the peasant class even if he or she works as a seasonal farm worker or is labelled as unemployed or underemployed, unless such peasant shifts to another class, such as a peasant who becomes an industrial worker or a rich peasant becomes a small landlord through merchant-usury operations or his son gets high formal education and joins the urban petty bourgeoisie. In big numbers, poor and lower middle peasants double as seasonal farm workers on the land of others as or seasonal odd jobbers in urban areas to augment their inadequate farm income.

Industry and Service Sectors

In combination with the big foreign banks and firms, the comprador big bourgeoisie and the bureaucrat capitalists have profited most from construction booms, accelerated mining and semi-manufacturing in the industrial sector. What is passed off as Philippine industry does not produce machine tools and most metals and chemicals of strategic importance. Even semi-manufacturing dependent on imported equipment and components has declined.

All subsectors of Philippine industry are dependent on the importation of equipment, fuel and other components and on the export of mineral ores, some semi-manufactures, fruit crops, rubber and palm oil. Mining has been extremely profitable for the big compradors and their foreign partners because the values of mineral products are extremely underdeclared to reduce tax payments. There are gross disparities between the declared values at the Philippine ports and those at the foreign destinations.

The kind of service sector that exists in the Philippines is not the extension of an industrial economy or so-called post-industrial economy in an overdeveloped country but that of a pre-industrial and semi-feudal economy. The wholesale and retail trade, banks, hotels, tourism, recreation, education, media, communications, computer services, handicraft and repair shops, city, gas and water supply are founded on the subordination of the Philippines as an underdeveloped country to the industrially developed countries.

The big comprador enterprises thrive in the service sector with their big service enterprises. The output values of and the employment in these enterprises are rated to the extent of more than 58 %, far higher than those of the basic productive sectors amounting together to 42 %. The service sector is bloated enough by the big enterprises but is further bloated by estimates of the output values and employment in the small and medium service enterprises, petty peddling, oddjobbing and various sorts of self-employment.

Worsening Conditions of Unemployment

The surplus population or reserve army of labor has rapidly increased in both the urban slums and rural areas. The previous accumulation of unemployed and odd jobbers in slum areas generate their own kind. And continuously the rural areas provide the urban areas with new waves of unemployed and odd jobbers aside from those who choose to remain in the countryside to compete for the dwindling odd jobs on allotted farms and plantations or to engage in slash and burn farming in forest regions and on mountain slopes.

Because of the lack of genuine land reform and national industrialization and stagnation and decline of the basic productive sectors of agriculture and industry, the semifeudal and pre-industrial character of the economy has been aggravated and the surplus population or unemployed has increased rapidly from the population growth in both rural and urban areas.

In the wake of the global economic stagnation since the financial crash of 2008, the demand for Philippine exports of the has weakened. The trade and budgetary deficits have grown. Servicing the accumulated foreign debt and getting new loans are becoming more difficult. The conditions of underdevelopment, unemployment and mass poverty are worsening.

In the months previous to Covid-19, the Duterte regime boasted of making the highest rate of economic growth in Asia at 6 to 7 % and keeping the unemployment rate low at only 4.5 per cent, better than the unemployment rate in a number of more developed countries. But the impact and consequences of the pandemic have unmasked and aggravated the crisis of the world capitalist system and that of the semicolonial and semifeudal ruling system in the Philippines.

Unravelling of Neoliberalism and Probable Consequences

After four decades of dominance, neoliberalism is unravelling even for the imperialist countries. It has caused more frequent and worse economic and political crisis. This 2020 a crisis worse than the Great Depression has come on top of the prolonged global stagnation since the financial crash of 2008. We can be certain that the basic semifeudal and pre-industrial character of the Philippine economy and the peasant majority of the labor force will become more exposed.

The illusion of the Philippines becoming a newly-industrialized country with a dwindling peasant population will be dispelled by the global depression, the drying up of international credit, the withdrawal of hedge funds and the decreased incomes of OFWs and call center employees.

There will be a dwindling of funds to sustain private construction and some public works; maintain the consumption-oriented and debt-dependent economy; and cover the ever growing trade and budgetary trade deficits and the worsening international balance of payments.

What will happen to the Philippines as the global capitalist economy goes into a worse state of stagnation and depression and the demand for cheap raw materials, cheap semimanufactures and cheap labor from the Philippines goes down, international credit becomes tighter and the problem of maintaining a consumption-oriented and debt-dependent country worsens?

The Philippine social volcano will erupt more violently than ever before. As the socio-economic and political crisis worsens, the reactionary government and the ruling classes will become ever more exploitative and oppressive. As a consequence, the broad masses of the people are driven to resist along the line of new democratic revolution through people’s war. ###

CPP/NDF-Negros: Pagpatuman ni Duterte sang martial law gamit ang mga maitom nga propaganda kag peke nga mga impormasyon batok sa CPP-NPA-NDFP

NDF-Negros propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (Apr 25, 2020): Pagpatuman ni Duterte sang martial law gamit ang mga maitom nga propaganda kag peke nga mga impormasyon batok sa CPP-NPA-NDFP

APRIL 25, 2020

Nagapabilin nga palpak, inutil kag wala gihapon sang konkreto nga tikang ang berdugo nga gobyerno ni Duterte paano tapnaon ang paglapta sang makamamatay nga Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) nga pandemya sa pungsod. Puno lamang sang pagpamahug kag pagpamasul ang unod sang iya mga pahayag nga nagapakita sang iya militarista kag utok-pulbura nga pagsabat sa krisis sosyo-ekonomiko kag ikaayong lawas nga ginapas-an subong sang pumuluyong Pilipino.

Padayon nga ginasakyan ni Duterte ang katalagman kag isyu sa COVID-19 agud hatagan ligwa ang pag-imposar sang laye militar sa pungsod para angkunon ang bug-os nga gahum pampulitika sang nagahari nga sahi. Ang militarista nga mga tikang sini kaangay sang pag-imposar sang Enhanced Community Quarantine kag lockdown upod na ang mga pahayag sini nga prisohon ukon patyon ang mga nagasupak ang matingkad na nga dagway kag pamaagi agud kontrolon ang malapad nga masa sang pumuluyo.

Gani indi na bag-o ang mga pahayag sini nga magpatuman sang martial law gamit ang mga maitom nga propaganda kag peke nga mga impormasyon sini batok sa Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front of the Philippines (CPP-NPA-NDFP) bilang rason agud tabunan ang iya mga kapalpakan kag kapabayaan sa pagtapna sang pandemya kag paghatag solusyon sa krisis sosyo-ekonomiko nga kahimtangan sang malapad nga pumuluyo nga padayon nga biktima sang iya mapintas nga mga patakaran.

Ang hayagan nga pagpamahug nga magdeklara sang martial law bisan pa may nagaluntad na nga de facto martial law ang nagapakita lamang sang paghuyang kag kahadlok sang reaksyunaryo nga rehimen ni Duterte batok sa nagabaskog kag nagasingki nga paghimakas sang sahing pigos kag ginahimuslan.

Ang NDF-Negros upod sa bilog nga rebolusyonaryo nga pwersa ang nagapanawagan sa bug-os nga pumuluyo sa isla nga mangin mabinantayon kag pamatukan ang pasista nga pamaagi sang rehimen US-Duterte sa pagsabat sa mga demokratiko nga mga demanda ilabi na nga nagapangutabang ang pumuluyo sa tuman nga gutom kag kaimulon tuga sang pagkadislokar sa palangabuhi-an tungod sang lockdown.

Padayon nga mag-isa agud depensahan ang kinamatarung kag demokrasya sa pihak sang mapintas nga tuyo sang rehimen nga magpatuman sang martial law sa pungsod. Padayon nga maglunsar sang madamo nga porma sang mga kampanya kag serbisyo angot sa kahimsog kag sanitasyon ilabi na sa pagpataas sang produksyon sa pagkaon agud mapangibabawan ang halit nga dala sang pandemya kadungan sa aton paghimakas agud pasabton kag patalsikon ang paantus, korap, traidor kag tiraniko nga rehimen US-Duterte.

Panginbulahan sa ika-47 nga tuig nga anibersaryo sang National Democratic Front. Nangin makasaysayanon ang papel sini sa rebolusyonaryo nga paghimakas sang pumuluyo nga nagatib-ong sang interes sang malapad nga seksyon para sa pungsodnon nga kahilwayan kag demokrasya.###

CPP/NPA-Mindoro: Paglabag ng 203rd Brigade/PNP-MIMAROPA sa batayang karapatan, ibayong kahirapan para sa Mindoreño

NPA-Mindoro propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (Apr 25, 2020): Paglabag ng 203rd Brigade/PNP-MIMAROPA sa batayang karapatan, ibayong kahirapan para sa Mindoreño

APRIL 25, 2020

Peke at Mapanlinlang na UCF ng Rehimeng Duterte, nalantad!

Sa pagtatapos ng idineklarang unilateral ceasefire [UCF] ng Rehimeng US-Duterte, saksi ang mamamayang Mindoreño na walang pinag-iba ito sa karaniwang araw ng buong layang paglulunsad ng Focused Military Operations /Retooled Community Support Program [FMO/RSCP] sa isla sa balangkas ng kontra-insurhensyang programang JCP-Kapanatagan.

Mula ng inilabas ang kautusan ng rehimeng US-Duterte sa sariling tigil putok noong Marso 19, 2020 hanggang sa natapos noong Abril 14, 2020, puno ang kamay ng 203rd Brigade at PNP-MIMAROPA hindi sa pagtugon sa pangangailangan ng mamamayang Mindoreño sa panganib ng COVID-19 kundi sa tuluy-tuloy na mga FMO/RCSPO sa mga pokus na eryang itinakdang prayoridad ng EO No. 70 o ng NTF-ELCAC.

Walang silbi ang deklarasyong ito ng UCF para sa sambayanang Mindoreño . Binale-wala nito ang panawagan ng Secretary General ng United Nations at ang mahigpit na kahilingan ng buong sambayanan na magkatulungan ang lahat laban sa krisis na dulot ng pandemyang COVID-19. Sinamantala pa ito ng 203rd Brigade para ipataw ang kamay na bakal sa buong isla ng Mindoro. Pandarahas, pagbabanta, paglikha ng teror at pagpataw ng dagdag na pahirap sa dati nang mahirap na kalagayan ng masa – sa ganito nagpakahusay ang 203rd Brigade/PNP-MIMAROPA sa buong panahon ng UCF.

Sinaklaw ng mga operasyong militar ang mga barangay at bayan ng Victoria, Socorro, Bongabong, Mansalay at Bulalacao sa Oriental Mindoro habang sa Occidental Mindoro ang mga bayan ng San Jose, Rizal, at Calintaan. Bukod pa ang mahigpit na kontrol nito sa mga haywey sa lahat ng bayan, sa mga kalsada papasok sa interyor, at huwag nang banggitin pa ang mga sentrong bayan at lunsod ng dalawang probinsya. Walang tigil naman ang mga operatiba sa paniktik sa lahat ng sulok ng isla, ito man ay sa kapatagan o sa mga pinakainteryor na lugar.

Sa tabing ng pagtugon sa programa laban sa COVID-19, nakapang-halihaw sa mga baryo hanggang sa kaloob-looban ng mga pamayanan ng mga katutubong Mangyan at magsasaka ang mga pwersa ng 203rd Brigade na 76th at 4th IB at PNP-Mimaropa.

Sa pagtatapos ng UCF, ang mga operatiba ng 4th IB, 76IB at PNP-MIMAROPA ay nag-iwan pa ng banta na matapos ang lockdown ipapatawag sa kampo ang mga sibilyang nasa listahan nila na diumano mga markadong pwersa ng CPP-NPA-NDF. Ito ang ipinag-aalala ngayon ng mga mamamayang Mindoreño na pumatong pa sa kahirapang hatid ng COVID19. Mabuno man nila ang panganib ng COVID at malampasan ang gutom na likha ng lockdown, may nakaamba namang banta na ma-tokhang sila dahil sa mga gawa-gawang kaso na ipinataw ng AFP/PNP. Obligado silang humarap sa kampo at tumigil doon ng ilang araw upang sumailalim sa interogasyon at sapilitang pag-suko.

Dahil dito, ang mga pwersa ng 203rd Brigade ang pangunahing tagalabag sa ipinatutupad na ECQ at siyang pangunahing tagapagpakalat ng nakamamatay na Covid-19.

Ang karanasang ito ay muling nagbigay ng aral sa sambayanan na ang UCF ay tusong pakana ng rehimeng Duterte upang pakampantehin ang rebolusyonaryong kilusan at supresahin ang mga rebolusyonaryong pwersa sa mga nakakasang atake ng AFP/PNP. Nakatagpo ang rehimeng Duterte ng magandang dahilan sa COVID19 upang ilusot ang kanyang matagal nang balak na swabeng maipataw ang diktaduryal na paghahari sa lipunang Pilipino.

Kaya habang abala ang mga yunit ng NPA-Mindoro sa pagharap sa pandemyang COVID-19 at pagtalima sa sariling deklarasyon ng CPP na tigil putok, patuloy naman itong inaatake ng 76th IB, 4th IB sa ilalim ng 203rd Brigade at ang PNP Mimaropa na may tabing ng kanilang unilateral ceasefire.

Kailangang ilantad, labanan at panagutin ng mga Mindoreño ang 203rd Brigade at PNP-MIMAROPA sa mga kriminal na kasalanan nilang ito sa bayan. Kasabay nito, pag-ibayuhin ang ating rebolusyonaryong pagkakaisa at paglaban. Wala tayong ibang maaasahan sa panahon ngayon kundi ang sarili nating lakas at ang lakas ng New People’s Army (NPA).

Biguin ang JCP-Kapanatagan ng rehimeng US-Duterte! Epektibong Labanan ang Covid-19 Pandemic! Ibagsak ang Virus sa Malakanyang! ###

CPP-Information Bureau: Monitor and analysis of AFP counterinsurgency operations 
during Covid-19 crisis

CPP-Information Bureau propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (Apr 26, 2020): Monitor and analysis of AFP counterinsurgency operations 
during Covid-19 crisis

Communist Party of the Philippines Information Bureau

(Initial Release)

Foreword 4
Summary information 6
Key points of analysis 8
Summary of key incidents 11
Raids and armed encounters 11
Aerial bombardment 14
Rights violations 15
Psyops 16

Download PDF

Simultaneous with placing the island of Luzon under lockdown over the Covid-19 pandemic, GRP President Duterte announced his intention to declare ceasefire on March 16. The ceasefire took effect on March 19, 2020 and ended on April 15, 2020. The NDFP Negotiating Panel expressed openness to recommend a similar ceasefire and awaited a formal offer of truce by the GRP. However, no such offer was made.

On March 24, UN Secretary General Antonio Gutteres issued a call for a “global ceasefire between warring parties for the common purpose of fighting the Covid-19 pandemic.” Heeding the call, and upon the recommendation of the NDFP Negotiating Panel, the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP-CC) issued a unilateral ceasefire declaration which covered the period March 25-April 15. The CPP-CC extended the ceasefire to April 30 to “ensure quick and unimpeded support to all people requiring urgent medical, health and socioeconomic assistance.”

Based on verified field reports of the NPA, as well as media reports and AFP statements since March 16, AFP counterinsurgency operations did not cease during this period and, in fact, intensified especially during the second week of March. Over the past six weeks, the AFP carried out widespread deployment of troops, psyops, aerial surveillance, aerial bombardments and combat operations across the country. As a consequence, a number of armed clashes erupted between units of the NPA and the AFP. Human rights abuses were perpetrated by the AFP.

This report aims to expose the characteristics, objectives, extent and key incidents of the AFP’s counterinsurgency operations over the past six weeks during which the Filipino people suffered great hardships under the Duterte regime’s Covid-19 lockdown.

This report is an initial release. We anticipate more reports to come in before we release the final report by the first week of May. Readers can send their feedback, comments, suggestions and questions.

Marco L. Valbuena

Chief, Information Bureau

Communist Party of the Philippines

Contact us at:

Summary information

Since the Duterte regime declared a lockdown on March 16 over the Covid-19 pandemic, the AFP mounted counterinsurgency operations in over 37 provinces, 48% of which are in Visayas and Mindanao, 33% in the Southern Tagalog region and 18% in Bicol, and 4% in provinces north of the NCR.

The AFP has so far deployed its troops in at least 396 villages in 148 towns and cities. Armed troops roam around communities, enter homes and accuse residents of being members or supporters of the NPA, set up checkpoints, occupy civilian structures and impose curfews and other oppressive policies. There are mounting complaints against soldiers going around and confronting people without wearing face masks raising fears over the probability of spreading Covid-19.

The AFP has conducted at least six aerial bombardment operations in Bukidnon (three rounds), Davao de Oro, Davao del Norte and Sarangani provinces, all in Mindanao, as well as aerial surveillance operations using drones or planes. Helicopters were also used to drop propaganda leaflets in the Mt. Province and Masbate. There have been several attacks on civilians including mass arrests of peasants.

Since March 17, there have been at least 33 armed clashes between various units of the New People’s Army and operating troops of the AFP. From March 16 to April 15, there were 16 such encounters (or four a week). From April 16 to 24, the number of armed clashes increased 17 or more than two a day. Of the 33 clashes, at least 17 were raids against NPA encampments, while others were encounters with NPA units.

In line with the orders of the CPP-CC, NPA units have ceased from mounting tactical offensives against the AFP, the PNP and other armed organizations of the GRP since March 25. Following international humanitarian law, the NPA is also reminded not to prevent, on the contrary, facilitate the work of organizations or agencies delivering relief or assistance to the people. The Central Committee has commended the NPA for strictly observing the ceasefire order, and for training their efforts at addressing the health and economic concerns and problems of the people. While on ceasefire, the NPA is instructed to maintain strict secrecy to avoid detection, and remain vigilant and ready to carry out active defense actions in the face of an armed attack by the AFP. Some units of the NPA have successfully thwarted the offensives of the AFP.

Key points of analysis

1. Despite GRP President Duterte’s declaration of ceasefire, purportedly to enable it to train all resources to respond to the Covid-19 pandemic, the Armed Forces of the Philippines has not relented in their costly counterinsurgency operations. There is no suspension of the Duterte regime’s strategic aim of crushing the NPA before the end of its term in 2022.

2. The GRP’s counterinsurgency operations are indecently costly in the face of urgent needs of the people amid the Covid-19 crisis. More or less 11,500 combat troops (or one platoon of 30 in every barangay covered) have been mobilized by the AFP to carry out intensified nationwide counterinsurgency operations. Receiving an allowance of P200 per meal, the AFP would spend at least P70 million for a 10-day operation. Tens of millions of pesos are also squandered in drone flights and aerial bombardment using fighter jets and attack helicopters.

3. The intent of the extensive deployment of forces and unabated combat operations is to engage NPA units in armed encounters during the Covid-19 ceasefire and amid the public health and economic crisis. To justify their attacks, the AFP has been quick to accuse the NPA of attacking their units, even when their own reports state that their units initiated “security patrols” which led to the said encounters, and by the fact that these armed clashes occurred in NPA encampments away from the villages.

4. The AFP has systematically propagated false information to depict the NPA as “thieves” who “stole” or are “planning to steal” relief goods intended for the people. The AFP started to peddle this lie as early as March 31 in their public statements regarding the armed clashes in Quezon. However, it would gain traction only around the second week of April when the government’s official media published news stories which condemned the NPA for taking away relief goods in Balangiga. Although the news story was revealed as fake, the AFP and Malacañang repeated the claim, and used it to fabricate more stories about “stealing” or disrupting the distribution of aid to peasants.

5. The intensified counterinsurgency operations of the AFP also aim to prevent the NPA from carrying out its own public health drive, mass campaigns to address the peasants economic problems and mobilization to assist in raising food production. This NPA campaign is being well received by the masses as they confront not only the Covid-19 pandemic, but also the hardships brought about by the lockdown and sharp downturn of the economy. The AFP wants to hinder this campaign as it deepens the unity between the NPA and the peasant masses, and help in further strengthening the NPA.

6. Duterte’s ultimate aim has unraveled when he declared on April 23 his intention of declaring martial law, purportedly to stop the NPA from attacking his soldiers who he claims are delivering service to the people. Clearly, by intensifying counterinsurgency operations, Duterte has created the conditions for widespread armed clashes, which he is now using as an excuse for establishing a fascist dictatorship, something he has long sought to do, to suppress all democratic forces who have been actively criticizing his government’s failure to address the Covid-19 pandemic.

7. Despite the widespread deployment of AFP forces, there is still a wide latitude for NPA units to continue conducting its work of rendering public health and economic service to the people. There are guerrilla fronts which the AFP cannot effectively cover, especially with the deployment of troops in the National Capital Region and to do road security. As instructed by the Party, the NPA can continue to carry out information drives and help the masses prepare for possible Covid-19 infections in their areas of operation.
Summary of key incidents

Raids and armed encounters

1) March 16. Troops of the 8th IB and 1st Special Forces Battalion mounted successive raids against NPA encampments at Sitio Bendum, Barangay Busdi, Malaybalay City, and in Mt. Kitanglad in Bukidnon.

2) March 21. Troops of the 44th IB raided an NPA camp in Barangay Penaranda, Kabasalan, Zamboanga Sibugay. Prior to the raid, the 44th IB deployed combat troops and conducted intense counterinsurgency operations in several barangays in Kabasalan since March 18, under the guise of “Covid-response.” Hundreds of troops were deployed in barangays Bakalan, Dimpak, Gumitna, Laknapan, Penaranda, Sayaw and Siolan. The NPA unit noted in its initial report that it has maintained an active defense posture since the deployment.

3) March 24. Elements of the 60th and 56th IB attacked and shelled an NPA unit at Sitio Tapayanon, Barangay Gupitan, Kapalong, Davao del Norte. The AFP mobilized two columns of soldiers and three armored fighting vehicles. The AFP claimed that the clash was an NPA attack, although it was clear that they were carrying out offensive combat operations as evidenced by the fact that they had prepositioned artillery units to back up their ground troops.

4) March 28. Forces of the 80th IB attacked a unit of the NPA in the mountainous area of Barangay Puray, Rodriguez, Rizal, several kilometers away from the village center. One soldier was killed. The AFP’s spot report also indicated that the 2nd Division Reconnaissance Company was mobilized to carry out blocking operations.

5) March 31. Troops of the 59th raided an NPA camp in Barangay Mabunga, Gumaca town, Quezon.

6) March 31. At 4 a.m., armed troops of the 97th IB raided a house where a sick NPA fighter was staying in Barangay Dapiwak, Dumingag, Zamboanga del Sur.

7) April 1. Troops of the 85th IB successively raided an NPA camp in Barangay White Cliffe, San Narcisco, and another in Barangay Ilayang Yuni, in Mulanay, both in Quezon province.

8) April 1. The 44th IB ambushed an NPA team at Sitio Sikatuna, Barangay Natan, Diplahan, Zamboanga Sibugay, at around 9:00 p.m. Four NPA fighters were wounded in action, one of whom was captured and was finished-off by the soldiers. The 44th IB fabricated a story claiming that they were raided in Barangay Balagon, in Siay town.

9) April 7. Armed troopers of the 301st Brigade fired at an NPA unit in the early hours of April 7 at Sitio Agilan, Barangay Panuran, Lambunao, Iloilo. The NPA and its medical officers were conducting an information drive in the said area. Forced to defend themselves and the villagers, the NPA fired countershots and safely withdrew from the incident. According to reports, one soldier died and some others were wounded.

10) April 10. A platoon of 30 soldiers of the 2nd IB and combat police led by 2Lt. Jay Zachary Tunguia attempted to encircle an NPA unit in Barangay Cabas-an, Aroroy, Masbate at 5 p.m. As the combat troops closed in, the Red fighters were left with no other option but to conduct active defense maneuvers resulting in a 30-minute skirmish which resulted in at least 10 casualties on the side of the military and police, with 1 killed and 9 wounded. The NPA squad was able to safely withdraw.

11) April 16. Forces of the 31st IB raided an NPA camp in Gabao, Irosin, Sorsogon.

12) April 19. Pursuit operation by the 2nd IB, together with the RMFB and 91st DRC resulted in a skirmish against the same unit they encountered on April 10.

13) April 19. The 94th IB conducted combat operations at Sitio Kamuag, Barangay Carabalan, Himamaylan City, ten kilometers away from the village center. The NPA unit carried out active defense maneuvers and successfully countered the attack. Three assaulting soldiers were killed including a lieutenant, while four others were wounded during the 30-minute encounter.

14) Troopers of the 91st IB reported to have engaged an NPA unit in Barangay Diaat, Maria Aurora town. Combat operations by the 91st IB have been carried out unabatedly since the first week of March since purported discovery of an NPA “arms and food cache” at Sitio Dayap, Barangay Punglo.

Aerial bombardment

1) March 18. The 1001st Infantry Brigade carried out aerial bombing runs in upland villages in the town of Mabini in Davao de Oro last March 18. The bombing started at 4 a.m. and lasted until late afternoon that day. Residents reported at least 20 bombs where dropped in the vicinity of Barangay Cabuyan, forcing 50 families to scramble to safety. The AFP justified their bombing by claiming it engaged an NPA unit in the area, although no such armed engagement occurred that day.

2) March 27. Philippine Air Force units under the 4th ID used an FA-50 fighter jet to drop 500-pound bombs near two Lumad communities in Barangay Mandahikan, Cabanglasan. Three bombs were dropped at around 9 a.m. and two more at 2 p.m, traumatizing children and the community residents. The airstrike severely damaged the environment which serves as the primary source of food and livelihood of the Lumads in the area.

3) March 29. Another round of aerial bombardment was carried out by the 4th ID, this time, using attack helicopters. At least 10 rockets were dropped in the same barangay (Mandahikan) at noontime. Rounds were also fired from artillery cannons installed at an adjacent barangay in Loreto, Davao del Norte. A Cessna surveillance aircraft flew overhead the whole day after the airstrike. The military also deployed an additional column of soldiers at Sitio Miyaray to conduct combat operations.

4) The 27th IB dropped at least four bombs in the vicinity of Sitio Kapanal in Barangay Gasi, Kiamba town at around five in the morning. A number of Lumad peasants were already at their farms when the bombing commenced. The bombing and strafing traumatized the community, especially the children. The AFP claim that the bombardment served as “aerial support” for their relief work.

Rights violations

1) March 18. Six residents of Barangay Cabuyan, Mabini town in Davao de Oro, were arbitrarily arrested and taken to the detachment of the 1001st Infantry Brigade, a few days after their village was subjected to aerial bombardment.

2) April 10. Soldiers of the 2nd IB and policemen arbitrarily arrested residents Romnick Vargas, Juan Dikino and Alden Javier in Barangay Cabas-an, Aroroy, Masbate, whom they paraded as members of the people’s militia. They also burned the house of Basyon Meralles and forcibly evicted residents Jun Dikino and Marven “Binoy” Grazil from the village.

3) April 16. Soldiers of the 31st IB ransacked the houses in Barangay Gabao, Irosin, Sorsogon and accosted at least 13 residents. Their cellphones were seized and some were mauled.

4) April 18. Troops of the 61st IB arrested at least 12 farmers, including five children, who are residents of Barangay Igpanulong, Sibalom, Antique. The farmers were gathering honey to augment their income. The arrested individuals are being accused of being members of the New People’s Army (NPA). The 61st IB claim that they were arrested after a supposed armed encounter with the NPA unit in the Antique and Iloilo border, which did not happen.

1) April 7. The 8th ID spread false information that local NPA Red fighters “robbed” the food aid intended for residents of Sito Bangon, Barangay Guinmaayohan Balangiga, Eastern Samar. Local officials including the town mayor and chief of police denied such an incident took place in the area. On April 13, 8th ID officials sat in the Municipal Peace and Order Council meeting to push for a resolution to support their story. Despite pressures from the military, local officials refused to say that the NPA “robbed” or “forcibly took” the food aid, but acceded to saying that the NPA just “took a portion” of it.

2) April 14. In Sorsogon, the 31st IB which is currently occupying a certain village in Bulusan attempted to take over the distribution of relief goods which were solicited by barangay officials. The soldiers wanted to grab credit and take photos of each beneficiary for “profiling.” The barangay officials refused to hand them over the aid and confronted the soldiers instead.

Data Resources:

CPP/NDF-Ilocos: Duterte plots to broaden rule through ChaCha and Martial Law

NDF-Ilocos propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (Apr 26, 2020): NDF-Ilocos: Duterte plots to broaden rule through ChaCha and Martial Law 

APRIL 26, 2020

Inadequate and inefficient anti-Covid19 measures include silencing people

The National Democratic Front – Ilocos (NDF-Ilocos) condemns, in the strongest terms possible, the Duterte administration’s crookedness in times of massive death and general uncertainty. Far from his previous posturing of indifference and arrogant complacency, he now utilizes the present tragedy to further consolidate and extend his rotten rule while the poor majority of the country battles the threat of coronavirus (Covid19) and the imminent risk of poverty, unemployment and hunger. As the Filipino people wait on him for political will in the difficult fight against the pandemic, Duterte fails miserably. Moreover, Duterte-sanctioned legal maneuvers and continuing fascism both in cities and in the countryside betray the true agenda of the regime during these trying times.

Business as Usual

It is business as usual in the grimmest of context. Using the pandemic, Duterte hit his first score of Php275 billion fund from the railroaded Bayanihan Act. It is a worthy addition to his pre-pandemic Office of the President funds, which already amounts to Php8.28 billion. As is the custom, the spending of such funds—collected through people’s taxes and the like—make the process of reporting and auditing more then difficult. Duterte and his bottom-feeders are free to do as they like. Case in point is this week’s government propaganda that it has already spent Php352.7 billion when it has nothing to show for it but a series of haphazard anti-poor and militarist band-aid solutions.

While the people awaits changes in the strategy to defeat Covid19, plots and maneuvers in the bureaucracy are aplenty. Since January, the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) has been busy with efforts to revive the Charter Change. Through successive memorandum orders, the DILG browbeat local government units (LGUs) to produce a signature campaign in support of Duterte’s version of Constitutional Reform. The latter are expected to submit their respective resolutions and signature drives on May. Although Congress and Senate currently remain closed due to the virus, it is not hard to imagine a special session just to enact Duterte’s much-needed revisions in the 1986 Constitution. Billion-peso funding are not the only perks railroaded through special sessions. It is just as possible to use such maneuver to stun the Filipino people with an extended Presidential term plus higher office for Duterte’s apprentice Bong Go. Together, through revised charter, the couple can enforce intensified draconian measures against the people without fear of accountability.

Duterte’s recent pronouncements to enforce Martial Law on the basis of supposed ‘lawlessness’ and looting by members of the New People’s Army (NPA) is also old news. Taking the fact that it is lacking in details, Duterte only further embarasses himself on top of the already embarassing mismanagement of the pandemic. He only serves to expose his own desperation to save face while grabbing more power for himself. The Communist Party of the Philippines, on the other hand, has aleady declared a unilateral ceasefire until the end of April. All units of the NPA are in active defense mode and any firefight can only result from Philippine Army (PA) units entering guerilla bases due to combat operations.

In the guerilla fronts of the region, for example, PA troops continue to launch search and destroy operations despite proclamations of unilateral ceasefire from the Government of the Philippines. Combined with civil-military encampment and intelligence gathering, these operations cause further anxiety and trauma among civilian populations. Alternately, through the Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict, it relentlessly harasses and endangers mass leaders of legitimate organizations.

Reign of (T)error

The NDF-Ilocos joins the nation in its justifiable clamor for urgent mass testing, adequate relief assistance to families of poor income up to middle class range, immediate reinforcement of the public health system and empowerment of LGUs to better handle the pandemic and its consequent effects on the grassroots-level.

Duterte, however, remains deaf to these calls and instead chooses to pin the blame on the people instead of providing assistance. The Philippine National Police (PNP) and the PA is quick to join the circus that is the regime’s mismanagement of this pandemic. Duterte’s declaration to shoot ‘violators’ dead and to allow the military to take over the enforcement of the measures against the pandemic only served to embolden the PA and PNP’s trigger-happy gunpowder-rotten brained elements.

Equally resistant to people’s criticisms and blinded by its loyalty to Duterte, the Department of Health (DOH) re-echoes his blunders. From prematurely and baselessly declaring that the Philippines has the pandemic under control to absurdly declaring that mass testing is unnecessary, the DOH itself seems to add to the burden of front liners already preoccupied with saving lives. As the month of April ends, with almost 500 deaths under its belt, the DOH at last decided to hold a meeting to plan against Covid19. This, after weeks of receiving purely endless abuse, unintelligible mutterings and threats of death and violence from Duterte. Meanwhile, hospitals and their staff find better chance of procuring protective gear and medical equipment from private donors. Much-awaited hospital supplies from the government finally arrived but with Bong Go’s name and face plastered on them.

The Filipino people will bear in their collective memory the months of Duterte’s complacency and its ill consequences. The deaths from this pandemic will be tallied together with the 12,000 deaths from Oplan Tokhang and 1,000 fatalities (excluding civilian deaths) from the bloody raid and occupation of Mindanao through years of Martial Law. Duterte’s reign of terror and error has made itself the bloodiest regime in recent history. LGUs that are intent on sincerely helping their constituents should stand in principle against the national government’s inadequacies and politicking.

They should not allow themselves to be used by national government leaders in the promotion of the former’s selfish advantages.

The people, on the other hand, has to assert for more effective anti-Covid19 measures. The rotten system has rendered the nation unprepared and vulnerable against the pandemic and that same system is dragging the process of defeating it—at the cost of the lives of the Filipino people. A regime as crooked as this should be scrutinized every step of the way. The use of violence should not be regarded as standard practice and should instead be condemned.

Duterte has used this pandemic as another tool to attack the human and civil rights of the people but the people will strike back for accountability and justice. It is up to the people to maximize all arenas possible, from legal struggle to revolutionary action, in order to overcome Covid19 and in the process overthrow all of Duterte’s efforts to broaden his regime of violence and corruption. ###

CPP/NDF-Ilocos: Duterte pursues war in Ilocos amidst the COVID pandemic

NDF-Ilocos propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (Apr 26, 2020): Duterte pursues war in Ilocos amidst the COVID pandemic

APRIL 26, 2020

The NDFP-Ilocos condemns the continuing all-out war of the US-Duterte regime especially in this time of a worldwide public health emergency. The fascist regime has not let go of its war against the people through focused military operations (FMO) and retooled commmunity support program (RCSP) for its intelligence operations, red-baiting, forced and fake surrender campaings and psywar across the region.

The Alfredo Cesar Command-New People’s Army Ilocos confirms that they have encountered joint combat operating troops of the 7th ID PA and PNP RMFB on April 21, 2020 near Barangay Patiacan, Quirino, Ilocos Sur. This was bound to happen as the fascist regime pursued its FMO and RCSP in the Ilocos Region while the NPA was in active defense in response to the ceasefire extension order of the Communist Party of the Philippines to further respond to the needs of the people affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and Duterte’s militarist lockdown.

As early as April 10, the US-Duterte regime has resumed its intelligence and combat operations in the boundaries of Ilocos Sur and Abra, and deployed military forces under the 7th Infantry Division, and as well as police combat troops, drones, and helicopters. This is a clear violation of its own ceasefire declaration that lasted until April 15.
Duterte covers up his failure to properly address the COVID pandemic and his ambitious desire to defeat the revolutionary forces by blaming the restive people, arresting and threatening to kill the hungry and desperate, and malicously propagating false news against thd revolutionary forces.

Duterte was granted additional special powers by his rubber stamp congress to supposedly respond to the alarming public health emergency and the great demands to support livelihood and provide for the basic needs of the people. But he refuses to tap the public funds allocated for his anti-people war — huge budget for combat operations and procurement of military equipments. Each brigade-size focused military operation that lasts for at least two weeks spends around P4-6 million. Duterte did not even reciprocate the CPP’s ceasefire extension until April 30. Instead of pouring all possible resources to deliver effective and appropriate health service and livelihood support for the people, Duterte resorted to accumulating more loans from imperialists, such as the PhP 5 billion loan from the WorldBank, which ties the country to new set of lopsided deals. The fascist regime again began to play fake news against the NPA, such as incidents of violating the ceasefire and high-jacking relief goods, as a tactic to mindset the public and to justify his impending formal declaration of a nationwide martial law.

With the undeniably worsening socio-economic crisis, Duterte is evermore desparate to extend its tyrannical rule by outrightly attacking all its opposition, repressing the democratic rights of the people, and launching an all-out war against the entire Filipino people. But the people will not be deceived nor cowed. Only the end of this warmonger puppet regime will end the massive threat against the people.

The NDFP-Ilocos calls for the end of the FMO, RCSP, and all other counter-insurgency campaigns of the US-Duterte regime in the region, and demands justice for all the atrocities and human rights violations of the state forces.

The NDFP-Ilocos calls for the unity and action of all democratic forces and the all-out support of allied forces to collectively surpass the COVID pandemic and fight against the state terrorism of the US-Duterte regime. #

Kalinaw News: Col Sison lauds NPA’s admission of IHL violation

Posted to Kalinaw News (Apr 26, 2020): Col Sison lauds NPA’s admission of IHL violation (By 3rd Infantry Division)

CAMP HERNANDEZ, Dingle, Iloilo- Col Marion Sison, the Commander of the Army’s 301st Infantry (Bayanihan) Brigade has acknowledged the NPA for admitting their IHL violation following the capture of 11 individuals including minors who were all members of the group during the recent encounter in Miag-ao.

In an interview on a local radio station in Antique, “Ka Ilyas”, the CTG’s spokesperson admitted that the encounter at Sitio Anoy, Barangay Cabalaunan, Miag-ao last April 18, was between their armed members and Army troops, but denied reports that they have been recruiting minors.

“This admission by the CTG’s validates the 301st Bde’s previous statement, that the captured individuals in the Miag-ao encounter were indeed members of the Communist Terrorist Group (CTGs), therefore corroborating our assertion that they were in clear violation of humanitarian laws, by using child warriors in armed hostilities,” said Col Sison.

“This admission already came straight from the horse’s mouth. They (CTG) just confirmed it though broadcast radio, when they are caught in the act, they are like an empty can , noisy but empty and it is not new to us,” the Brigade Commander added.

Meanwhile, the Provincial Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (PTF-ELCAC) in Antique Province also condemned the CTG’s nefarious acts of deceiving and recruiting minors for their armed struggle.

The PTF-ELCAC of Antique enjoined the Antiqueños to work hand in hand against the communist menace, and to show their love for their children, by guiding them into the right path.

“By strengthening the families, we create more secure communities. It is commendable that the Province of Antique sets a high standard of peace and security in the area. Through the PTF-ELCAC, the province manifested its sincerity to fight terrorism along with your Army and PNP. Let us not allow our children to be recruited by these terrorists! Their continued recruitment of minors as child warriors is a clear violation of the Children’s Right and the International Humanitarian Law,” Col Sison added.

Six (6) of the Eleven (11) captured have been properly turned over to the Philippine National Police, and cases have been filed against them, while the five (5) minors rescued from the clutches of the communist-terrorist group are now under the custody and protection of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD)- Field Office VI.

In its press statement, the DSWD-6 assured that appropriate interventions will be provided to the five minors. The Agency also strongly condemned the NPA’s recruitment of minors for armed struggle.

[Kalinaw News is the official online source of information on the pursuit for peace in the Philippines This website is a property of the Civil-Military Operations Regiment, Philippine Army located at Lawton Avenue, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City. Contact us:]

Kalinaw News: Army and PNP discover NPA hideout, recovers war materiel

Posted to Kalinaw News (Apr 26, 2020): Army and PNP discover NPA hideout, recovers war materiel (By 7th Infantry Division)

Fort Magsaysay, Nueva Ecija – A newly abandoned New People’s Army (NPA) bandits’ hideout was discovered by joint elements of the Army’s 91st Infantry “Sinagtala” Battalion (91IB), 1st Provincial Mobile Force Company, Nueva Ecija Police Provincial Office (NEPPO) and the 3rd Regional Mobile Force Battalion while conducting combat operations at Sitio Dupinga, Brgy. Ligaya, Gabaldon, Nueva Ecija on April 22, 2020.

The NPA lair could accommodate around 50 persons. Buried and found within the premises are: one (1) M16 rifle upper receiver group, 400 rounds of ammunition for M14 rifle, three (3) water gallons containing rice, and one (1) large cooking pot.

According to Lieutenant Colonel Reandrew P. Rubio, Acting Commanding Officer of 91IB, the discovery of the bandits’ hideout is a result of the “intensified combat operations” of all 7th Infantry ‘Kaugnay’ Division (7ID) units, as ordered by Brigadier General Alfredo V. Rosario, Jr., the 7ID Commander.

The directive was given in light of the NPA bandits’ attack against government troops who were securing the local government unit of Maria Aurora’s relief activities, in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic in Barangay Diaat of said town on 21 April 2020, which resulted to the killing of two (2) soldiers and wounding of another three (3).

Commenting on the operational gains of 91IB, Colonel Andrew D. Costelo, Commander of the Army’s 703rd Brigade said that he expects “more positive results in the days to come, as the Army will not allow the NPA bandits to take advantage of the current health crisis the country is facing by collecting supplies and cash assistance intended for our needy people”.

[Kalinaw News is the official online source of information on the pursuit for peace in the Philippines This website is a property of the Civil-Military Operations Regiment, Philippine Army located at Lawton Avenue, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City. Contact us:]

Kalinaw News: 67IB provided decent funeral and burial of NPA

Posted to Kalinaw News (Apr 26, 2020): 67IB provided decent funeral and burial of NPA (By 10TH INFANTRY DIVISION)

BAGANGA, DAVAO ORIENTAL – The 67IB provided a decent burial of two (2) dead body of NPA members who died in the encounter that transpired at Km 22, Brgy Campawan, Baganga Davao Oriental last April 16, 2020.

With the support of Hon Erlinda C Nunez, Mayor of Cateel supported the embalming of two (2) cadavers while Hon Arturo Monday, Municipal Mayor of Baganga DOR, together with LTC DEMA-ALA, Commanding Officer of this unit provided a decent funeral and burial of two members of NPA Basanies Manaytay and one (1) unidentified cadaver, a member of Front North, Sub-Regional Committee (SRC1) of Southern Mindanao Regional Command (SMRC) at Funeral Home, Brgy Lucod, Baganga DOR.). The cadaver of Basanies Manaytay was successfully turned over to his mother Mrs Lusminda Manaytay and at the same day was transferred to Prk 5, Brgy Cogonon, Trento Agusan Del Sur.

“Sang kanilan kakabos, dili nato angay pasagdan yang patay na lawas sang NPA bisan sang kanilan pag talikod sang kanato gobyerno, kanato gihapon ipatigbabaw yang pagrespeto ug yang kanato pagka maki-otao. Yagapasalamat ako pag usab sang way puas na supporta sang kanato Mayor sang Baganga ug Cateel Davao Oriental Hon Arturo Monday ug Hon Erlinda C Nunez na permi andam mo suporta para sang kalambuan ug hapsay na pagpamuyo adi sang kanato lugar. Sa pagkaduon haw kisom ug sang dugang pang mga panahon, ang 67IB yagasaad sang kanunay na magbalantayon ug himuon niyang tanan para mawala da yang mga rebelde na perming yagasamok-samok sang mga kaotawan”. LTC LOUIE G DEMA-ALA, Commanding Officer 67IB.

[Kalinaw News is the official online source of information on the pursuit for peace in the Philippines This website is a property of the Civil-Military Operations Regiment, Philippine Army located at Lawton Avenue, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City. Contact us:]

Kalinaw News: “No let-up on fights against two-pronged viral attacks” Army Commander says

Posted to Kalinaw News (Apr 26, 2020): “No let-up on fights against two-pronged viral attacks” Army Commander says (By 3rd Infantry Division)

CAMP PERALTA, Jamindan Capiz – Efforts to fight two (2) of the most dreaded viruses that Filipinos ever faced is in full swing according to Major General Eric Vinoya, Commander of the Army’s 3rd Infantry Division in Western and Central Visayas, as he talked about the 3ID’s fight against a two-pronged enemy – the COVID-19 and the CPP-NPA virus.

As the 3rd Infantry Division performs its important role under the IATF MEID in preventing the local transmission of the Corona Virus, it had also stepped up its campaign against the threats posed by the CPP-NPA terrorists, after the latter perpetrated several atrocities against the troops who were conducting security operations and information dissemination in support to the government’s effort in mitigating the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Recently, joint elements from the 79th Infantry Battalion and 6Th Special Action Battalion of the PNP’s Special Action Force who were conducting security patrol and information dissemination in connection with the COVID-19 pandemic clashed against suspected CPP-NPA terrorists near BRGY. Gawahon, Victorias City, Negros Occidental around 8:30 am on Friday, April 24, 2020

With the incident, Major General Vinoya asserted that the 3rd Infantry Division will continue to assist the Local Government Units in its area in pressing the fight against all threats to the well-being of the people and its peaceful communities.

“We have come to realize that even with the magnitude of our recent battle against COVID-19 pandemic, another persistent virus emerged which has plagued the Filipinos communities for so long a time – the CPP-NPA virus. While we wanted to focus our efforts to help out people in preventing the local transmission of COVID-19, we cannot just turn a blind eye on the banditry and bloodlust of the CPP-NPA terrorists. Hence, we have stepped up our efforts and we will stop at nothing. There will be no let-up in our fight against our two-pronged enemy, the Corona Virus and the CPP-NPA Virus.” said Major General Vinoya.

[Kalinaw News is the official online source of information on the pursuit for peace in the Philippines This website is a property of the Civil-Military Operations Regiment, Philippine Army located at Lawton Avenue, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City. Contact us:]

Kalinaw News: AFP Mobile Kitchen now in San Juan City to provide free meals to homeless

Posted to Kalinaw News (Apr 26, 2020): AFP Mobile Kitchen now in San Juan City to provide free meals to homeless (By Kalinaw News)

CAMP AGUINALDO, Quezon City – The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) utilizes again its Mobile Kitchen to provide hot meals to homeless and street dwellers on its second location in Barangay Corazon de Jesus, San Juan City for two days until April 26, 2020.

The activity is under the “Kapwa Ko, Sagot Ko” Campaign that is implemented by the Civil Relations Service AFP in support of the overall government effort to assist citizens during the Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) in Luzon.

This came after the successful distribution of meals to around 3,000 disadvantaged individuals and families on its pilot project site in Purok 1, 2 and 3, of Barangay Tatalon, Quezon City last April 20.

The two mobile kitchen trucks tagged as “Vessels of Blessings” are deployed with culinary trained soldiers and support personnel onboard to prepare and distribute the meals to designated drop-off points respectively.

The AFP will also be providing meals to the stranded workers or students receiving little or no support, informal settlers and families in depressed communities. The provision of meals through the AFP Mobile Kitchen complies with ECQ protocols that limit civilian movements and activities outside their residences.

The deployment of the mobile kitchen shows the continuous commitment of the AFP to protect the welfare of every Filipino as we face an unconventional enemy, the COVID19.

[Kalinaw News is the official online source of information on the pursuit for peace in the Philippines This website is a property of the Civil-Military Operations Regiment, Philippine Army located at Lawton Avenue, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City. Contact us:]

Kalinaw News: 20IB overruns CNTs’ lair, seizes High Powered Firearms in Northern Samar

Posted to Kalinaw News (Apr 25, 2020): 20IB overruns CNTs’ lair, seizes High Powered Firearms in Northern Samar (By 8th Infantry Division)

CAMP LUKBAN, CATBALOGAN CITY – Troops from 20th Infantry (WE LEAD) Battalion, 8th Infantry Division, Philippine Army overran Communist Terrorist Group’s (CTG) lair and seized high powered firearms and other war materiel in an encounter at the vicinity of Barangay P. Rebadulla, Catubig, Northern Samar at about 3 o’clock in the afternoon, April 23, 2020.

Based on the initial report from Lieutenant Colonel Juan A Gullem, Commanding Officer of 20IB, his troops, while responding to the local residents’ complaint about the CTG’s continued interruption on the completion of government projects in the Pacific towns and hampering the distribution of the Social Amelioration Program (SAP), engaged in a 20-minute firefight which led the CPP-NPA Terrorists (CNTs) to abandon the said lair and withdrew towards the mountainous area of the said barangay.

The enemy’s lair can accommodate more or less 40 CNTs and has one (1) multi-purpose hall, eleven (11) bunkers, nineteen (19) makeshift tents, one (1) comfort room, one (1) kitchen and three (3) posts.

The troops seized two (2) M14 rifles; one (1) AK47 with four (4) magazines; one (1) M16 rifle with seven (7) magazines; one (1) M653; one (1) Cal. 22 (rifle converted); twelve (12) IEDs; one (1) hand grenade; three (3) bandoliers; one (1) Baofeng radio with charger; one (1) cellular phone; twenty (20) backpacks, assorted medical supplies, and subversive documents with high intelligence value.

No casualty was reported on the government side while undetermined casualties on the enemy’s side as evidenced by the bloodstains found on the route of withdrawal.

Troops under the 20IB are on search and pursuit operation to sustain and ensure that the CNTs will be caught.

Hon. Edwin Marino Ongchuan, Governor of Northern Samar Province remarked, “The dedication of uniformed men on the face of this COVID-19 public health emergency is commendable. It clearly attests to the seriousness of our government forces in crushing the enemies of the state. We denounce this act of atrocity and all other acts by individuals or groups who take advantage of this COVID health crisis to sow fear and disorder in the community.”

Colonel Lowell R. Tan, Commander of 803rd Infantry (PEACEMAKER) Brigade, in his statement, “The overwhelming support of the populace who are already fed up of the rebels’ assaults and atrocities provides our security forces timely information leading to a successful operation that brings us one step closer to peace and prosperity.”

[Kalinaw News is the official online source of information on the pursuit for peace in the Philippines This website is a property of the Civil-Military Operations Regiment, Philippine Army located at Lawton Avenue, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City. Contact us:]

Kalinaw News: Army’s 1003rd Brigade Secure DSWD’s Social Amelioration Distribution in Davao City

Posted to Kalinaw News (Apr 25, 2020): Army’s 1003rd Brigade Secure DSWD’s Social Amelioration Distribution in Davao City (By 10th Infantry Division)

HEADQUARTERS, 1003rd Brigade, Barangay Mahayag, Bunawan District, Davao City- To ensure that the DSWD’s Social Amelioration benefits reaches its recipients safely, the 1003rd Brigade secured all of DSWD 11’s schedules of pay-outs within its areas of responsibility.

The distribution to the following 14 barangays has been successfully implemented: Sumimao; Panalum; Lumiad; Mabuhay; Fatima; Paradise Embac; Paquibato Proper; Colosas; Tapak; Pandaitan; Salapawan; Mapula and; Malabog in Paquibato District and Barangay Tibungco of Bunawan District, Davao City.

At present, 10,006 individuals have already received their benefits worth Ph6,000 each as scheduled in each of the 32 distribution sites secured by the unit.

The distribution started on April 20 in Paquibato District and will push through to other city districts until all beneficiaries are covered expectedly before the end of April.

Colonel Nolasco Mempin, Brigade Commander of 1003rd Brigade said his unit will continue its commitment to ensure safety and security of the program’s implementation against any criminal or terrorist group.

[Kalinaw News is the official online source of information on the pursuit for peace in the Philippines This website is a property of the Civil-Military Operations Regiment, Philippine Army located at Lawton Avenue, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City. Contact us:]

Kalinaw News: NPA Killed, Yield High-powered firearms, sacks of rice in Lanao Sur Clash

Posted to Kalinaw News (Apr 25, 2020): NPA Killed, Yield High-powered firearms, sacks of rice in Lanao Sur Clash (By 1st Infantry Division)

CAMP SANG-AN, Labangan Zamboanga del Sur – One communist NPA terrorist (CNT) member was killed and yielded three high-powered firearms, 36 sacks of rice and other war materiel to Army’s 49th Infantry Battalion in Brgy Buntalis, Lumba-Bayabao, Lanao del Sur 9:30 a.m., Saturday.

According to Lt. Col. Benjamin Tapnio, Commanding Officer of 49th Infantry Battalion, they’ve out-maneuvered the 20 NPA terrorist in their lair, whom the group were also operating in the hinterland boundaries of Bukidnon and Iligan.

No government trooper was wounded in the firefight and pursuit operation is conducted to neutralize the remaining terrorist who also suffered numbers of injured due to bloodstains in their withdrawal route.

Around 2:40 p.m. today, the pursuit troops also engaged the same group. The 3-minute firefight incurred no casualties both sides.

Meanwhile, Col. Jose Maria Cuerpo II, the 103rd Infantry Brigade Commander said that, “We’ve already identified their (CNTs) lairs and we call on those who were wounded to lay down their arms peacefully, to have a proper medical attention.”

“These NPA terrorist group were the ones conducting tactical offensives and ambuscades of government troops in Bukidnon near the boundary of Lanao del Sur province”, added Col. Cuerpo.

He also thanked the residents and the concerned citizen for the timely and accurate report that led to the successful encounter in favor of the government troops.

Col Cuerpo also added that the terrorist group threatened the frontliners who were helping the communities in defeating and mitigating the spead of Covid-19 disease.

For his part, Major General Gene Ponio, Commander of the 1st Infantry (TABAK) Division, lauded the accomplishment of 49th IB and 103rd Infantry Brigade.

He also urge the Communist NPA to surrender and avail the government’s Enhanced Local Integration Program (E-CLIP).

However, he also expressed his sympathy to the family and relatives of the NPA terrorist who was killed.

“It is very tragic that he has taken arms against the people of Lanao del Sur when only through peace can development and social justice be achieved”, said MGen Ponio.

Troops of 49IB are also in close communication with the barangay officials to ensure the safety and security of the residents in the area.

[Kalinaw News is the official online source of information on the pursuit for peace in the Philippines This website is a property of the Civil-Military Operations Regiment, Philippine Army located at Lawton Avenue, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City. Contact us:]

Kalinaw News: Gov’t forces, NPA clash anew in Zambo del Su

Posted to Kalinaw News (Apr 25, 2020): Gov’t forces, NPA clash anew in Zambo del Sur (By 1st Infantry Division)

While conducting security patrol, troops of the 97th Infantry Battalion encountered undetermined number of the Communist NPA Terrorist (CNT) group in Barangay Balukbahan, Bayog, Zamboanga del Sur at 7:40 am, April 24, 2020.

Said encounter resulted in undetermined number of casualties on the enemy side, as evident on the bloodstains scampered in the area.

The government side lost one brave soldier who paid the ultimate sacrifice fighting for his countrymen.

“He was badly wounded during the encounter and expired around 10:00 am while he was being airlifted by our Air Force and military doctors for proper medical attention,” said Lt. Col. Manaros Boransing II, Commanding Officer of the 97th Infantry Battalion.

Pursuit operation is being conducted to neutralize the fleeing militants.

“Same group was encountered by our troops on April 21 where they recovered several war materiel, one M16 rifle, and an improvised explosive device,” said Col. Leonel Nicolas, 102nd Infantry Brigade commander.

In his message, Maj. Gen. Generoso Ponio, Commander, JTF ZamPeLan vowed to sustain the focused military operation in order to destroy the group and free the province from the menaces of society.

“We extend our deepest sympathy to the bereaved family and friends of our soldier who paid the ultimate sacrifice while protecting our people from the terrorist group,” said Maj. Gen. Ponio.

“His sacrifice was borne out of his dedication to protect the constituents of Zamboanga del Sur in pursuit of peace and development,” he added.

Identity of fallen hero is withheld pending notification of his family.

“Amid the worldwide crisis due to corona virus disease, another sickening problem that needs to be continually addressed is terrorism,” said Lt. Gen. Cirilito Sobejana, commander of the Western Mindanao Command.

“While our soldiers continue to risk their lives supporting our fellow frontliners in the fight against COVID-19, they are also faced to real-life dangers as they fulfil their mission to crush the terrorists and bring peace in the communities,” Lt. Gen. Sobejana added.

[Kalinaw News is the official online source of information on the pursuit for peace in the Philippines This website is a property of the Civil-Military Operations Regiment, Philippine Army located at Lawton Avenue, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City. Contact us:]

Kalinaw News: Army’s 91IB troopers recover 5 high-powered firearms from NPA bandits in Aurora

Posted to Kalinaw News (Apr 25, 2020): Army’s 91IB troopers recover 5 high-powered firearms from NPA bandits in Aurora (By 7th Infantry Division)

Fort Magsaysay, Nueva Ecija – As a result of pursuit operations against the fleeing NPA bandits that they clashed with on April 21, 2020, the 91st Infantry “Sinagtala” Battalion (91IB), recovered five (5) high-powered firearms and assorted ammunitions along the escape routes of the fleeing bandits at vicinity Barangay Diaat, Maria Aurora, Aurora on April 23, 2020.

The troops recovered four (4) M16 rifles & one (1) M653 rifle or baby armalite, 235 rounds of ammunition, seventeen (17) magazines for M16.

The recovery of firearms was a result of an information relayed by concerned civilians – where the NPA bandits left their firearms, while they were running for their lives and bringing with them their casualties as troops were hot on their trails. Lieutenant Colonel Reandrew P. Rubio, Acting Commanding Officer of 91IB, lauded the civilians for the crucial information provided them.

“It is evident that the enemy incurred casulties too; as the NPAs would not just leave behind their treasured firearms and ammunitions in their haste to escape, as it is their only defense. It is only a matter of time before the NPA bandits we are pursing will be cornered, arrested, and be made to answer for their crimes,” added Lieutenat Colonel Rubio.

The civilians, when asked why they tipped-off the locations of the NPA terrorists’ firearms, said that they want the NPA bandits out of their barangay as they want it peaceful as before, when the NPA bandits were not yet around.

With the attack of local terrorists to the 91IB troops, and with another encounter between the troops of the 81st Infantry “Spartan” Battalion and NPA bandits in Ilocos Sur on that same day (April 21), the 7th Infantry “Kaugnay” Division (7ID), gave order to intensify their combat operations.

Issuing the order is Brigadier General Alfredo V. Rosario, Jr., the 7ID Commander, who commended the troops for the result of the pursuit operations. Further, he said, “Amidst the Covid-19 crisis that the country is facing, we have to intensify our security and combat operations to protect the relief goods that the government and the private stakeholders are giving to the needy. Our people can be assured that your Army will do all necessary actions to keep everyone safe, and for the relief goods to be made available for them at whatever cost.”

[Kalinaw News is the official online source of information on the pursuit for peace in the Philippines This website is a property of the Civil-Military Operations Regiment, Philippine Army located at Lawton Avenue, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City. Contact us:]