Monday, March 15, 2021

Death of rebel leader in Nueva Vizcaya ‘big blow’ to NPA

From the Philippine News Agency (Mar 14, 2021): Death of rebel leader in Nueva Vizcaya ‘big blow’ to NPA (By Jason De Asis)

BALER, Aurora – A top Philippine Army (PA) official on Sunday said the neutralization of a rebel front official in Nueva Vizcaya is a big blow to the New People's Army (NPA).

Lt. Col. Reandrew P. Rubio, commander of the Army’s 91st Infantry Battalion under the 7th Infantry Division, said Rommel Tucay, a secretary of the communist terrorist group (CTG) Komiteng Larangang Guerrilla Sierra Madre (KLG-SM), died during an exchange of gunfire with government troops in Barangay Kimbutan, Dupax Del Sur town on Saturday.

The NPA front operates in the provinces of Aurora, Nueva Ecija and parts of Nueva Vizcaya and Quirino.

Rubio said the remaining units of active guerilla fronts in these areas continue to weaken due to sustained and intensified efforts of the government to end local communist armed conflict.

The rebel forces are almost decimated due to the intensified focused military operations, he added.

“The CTG has been substantially weakened because of the sustained and intensified government efforts to end local communist armed conflict that resulted to significant losses of their key leaders, seasoned fighters, and mass supporters,” Rubio said in an interview.

Likewise, he cited the successful arrest of Delfin Pimentel, 62, a former secretary of the Aurora Provincial Committee under the CTG's Central Luzon Regional Committee last March 3.

“Our intensified efforts against insurgency are successful because of the troops’ dedication, hard work and sacrifices to win the campaign,” he said.

“This was also a result of the implementation of the community support program in remote villages, the full support from various government agencies and the delivery of services and programs to the people,” Rubio added.

BIFF bombmaker yields to Army in NoCo

From the Philippine News Agency (Mar 15, 2021): BIFF bombmaker yields to Army in NoCot (By Edwin Fernandez)

SURRENDER. BIFF bombmaker and sniper Tong Dubpalig yields his .50 caliber Barrett sniper rifle following his surrender Sunday (March 14, 2021) to Lt. Col. Edgardo Vilchez Jr., Army’s 34IB chief, in Midsayap, North Cotabato. Dubpalig belonged to the BIFF-Karialan faction that is believed responsible for the string of bombing incidents in Central Mindanao the past several years. (Photo courtesy of 34IB)

CAMP SIONGCO, Maguindanao – A bomb maker of the outlawed Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) in Maguindanao has surrendered to the Army’s 34th Infantry Battalion (34IB) in Midsayap, North Cotabato, the military announced Monday.

Lt. Col. Edgardo Vilchez Jr., commanding officer of the 34IB, said
Tong Dubpalig, a bomb expert under the Kagi Karialan faction, voluntarily surrendered to them Sunday afternoon with his .50 caliber Barrett sniper rifle.

“Aside from being a bombmaker, Dubpalig also works as a sniper for the terror group,”
Vilchez told reporters here in an interview Monday.

In a separate interview, Brig. Gen. Roberto Capulong, the 602nd Infantry Brigade commander, said Dubpalig was involved in a series of bombing incidents in Maguindanao and North Cotabato provinces in recent years.

“The surrenderer was a former follower of the late Mando Mamalumpong, the spokesperson of the BIFF-Karialan faction who was neutralized by government forces in a clash at Midsayap, North Cotabato in 2019,” Capulong said.

Gov’t troops seize war materiel after clash with rebels in Apayao

From the Philippine News Agency (Mar 15, 2021): Gov’t troops seize war materiel after clash with rebels in Apayao (By Villamor Visaya, Jr.)

WAR MATERIEL. The firearms, medical supplies and anti-government documents recovered by government soldiers and policemen from an encounter site in Flora, Apayao on Sunday (March 14, 2021). The firefight occurred days after town officials declared communist rebels as persona non grata. (Photo courtesy of 17IB, Philippine Army)

A joint team of soldiers and police operatives seized four high-powered guns and assorted war materiel from New People’s Army (NPA) rebels during a running gun battle in Flora, Apayao on Sunday.

Army soldiers from the 17th Infantry Battalion (17IB) and Marine Battalion Landing Team 10 (MBLT10), and personnel from the Apayao Police Provincial Office, were conducting combat patrols when they encountered some 20 NPA rebels belonging to the West Front Committee-Komiteng Probinsya Cagayan, Komiteng Rehiyon-Cagayan Valley in Mallig village.

A 15-minute firefight ensued, forcing the rebels to withdraw to Sitio Tawini in Barangay Upper Atok where the government forces caught up with them, resulting in another 15-minute gun battle.

During the clearing operation after the communist fighters fled, Army soldiers recovered four rifles, medical supplies, anti-government documents, backpacks and other personal items at the encounter site.

The firefight occurred days after town officials declared communist rebels as persona non grata.

Lt. Col. Angelo C. Saguiguit, 17IB commander, told the Philippine News Agency they are thankful to the community for providing them information that led to the encounter and the recovery of firearms and war items.

The NPA is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, and New Zealand.

Army seizes NPA arms cache in NoCot

From the Philippine News Agency (Mar 15, 2021): Army seizes NPA arms cache in NoCot (By Noel Punzalan)

Google map of Makilala, North Cotabato

CAMP SIONGCO, Maguindanao – Army troopers seized an arms cache belonging to the communist New People’s Army (NPA) in Makilala, North Cotabato, the military here said Tuesday.

Maj. Gen. Juvymax Uy, Army’s 6th Infantry Division (6ID) commander, said the NPA weapons were found Monday by government forces in Sitio Lacube, Barangay Malabuan.

Uy said former NPA members who surrendered to the government pinpointed to where the firearms were hidden.

“Residents also provided information to the members of the Community Support Program Team of 90IB on the location of the arms cache," Uy said.

The seized armaments comprised of one M16 rifle, two gun barrels for Garand rifle, two barrels for M1 Carbine rifle, one barrel for M14 rifle, and ammunition.

Combined troopers from the 90IB and 602nd Infantry Brigade of the 6ID and the 39 Infantry Battalion and 1002nd Infantry Brigade -- operating units under the10 Infantry Division -- worked together in completing the mission of finding the war materiel.

Uy expressed appreciation to former NPA members who cooperated with government forces to locate the arms cache.