Wednesday, April 3, 2024

NTF-ELCAC: Removal of 'mass bases' greatly weakened NPA

From the Philippine News Agency (Apr 1, 2024): NTF-ELCAC: Removal of 'mass bases' greatly weakened NPA (By Priam Nepomuceno)

MANILA – The National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) is confident the government security forces will soon dismantle the 11 weakened New People's Army guerilla fronts within the year.

This as NTF-ELCAC executive director Undersecretary Ernesto Torres Jr. said in a statement on Sunday that the creation of the task force in 2018 is instrumental in the reduction and elimination of so-called "mass bases" that led to the weakening and subsequent dismantling of NPA guerilla fronts.

Torres added that one of the essential characteristics of an NPA-cleared area is the lack of a "mass base" and resource generation capability, which also means that the inhabitants of a cleared locality have no more sympathy toward the communist insurgents.

"Meaning, ‘yung mga tao doon mismo ang nagbibigay na ng information sa mga security forces natin kung sila (NPA) ay nagre-recover or bumabalik pa sa community to conduct atrocities or to extort money (This means that the residents there are the ones giving information to security forces of (NPA) attempts to return to community by conducting atrocities or extortion)," he added.

Torres' remarks came in response to doubts about the strength and armed capability of the NPA owing to recent encounters between state forces and communist rebels in some parts of the country.

From 89 active guerilla fronts in 2018, Torres said there are only 11 weakened NPA guerilla fronts left -- five in Luzon and three each in the Visayas and Mindanao, which he is confident will soon be taken down by government soldiers within the year.

Torres added that another characteristic of an area that had its guerilla front dismantled is the elimination of the NPA's politico-military structure and the degradation of the its capabilities to launch violent activities.

Earlier, the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) said more than 400 NPA rebels were neutralized this year alone, leaving the terror group with only more or less 1,000 members.

Highly significant from various focused military and police operations were the demise or capture during armed encounters of some high-ranking CPP-NPA cadres.

He added that the combination of focused military operations and infusion of the government’s Support to Barangay Development Program (SBDP) highlights the importance that community involvement plays in upholding security and averting the reappearance of threats in areas that have been cleared from the influence of the CPP-NPA.

The Retooled Community Support Program (RCSP) collectively involves residents in identifying gaps that hamper development in their communities for SBDP to come in.

Torres also said these development mechanisms go along with the implementation of Local Peace Engagement (LPE) and the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program (E-CLIP) that encourage NPA remnants to lay down their arms, surrender peacefully, and abandon the communist movement.

Torres assured that by actively collaborating with security forces, the community became an integral part of the defense against insurgent activities, ensuring long-term stability and peace in communities cleared of NPA influence.

DND eyes more engagements with India on climate action, defense

From the Philippine News Agency (Apr 2, 2024): DND eyes more engagements with India on climate action, defense (By Priam Nepomuceno)

DEEPENING TIES. Indian Minister of External Affairs, Dr. Subrahmanyam Jaishankar (left) and Defense Secretary Gilberto Teodoro Jr. shake hands during their meeting at the Department of National Defense (DND) headquarters in Camp Aguinaldo, Quezon City on March 26, 2024. The DND on Monday (April 1) said it is keen on increasing engagements with the South Asian neighbor on climate change mitigation and defense cooperation. (Photo courtesy of the DND)

MANILA – The Department of National Defense (DND) is looking to forge stronger climate change mitigation cooperation with its Indian counterparts, aside from boosting its defense ties with the South Asian country.

"For his part, as the Chairperson of the National Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (NDRRMC), Secretary (Gilberto) Teodoro (Jr.) highlighted the possibility of cooperation between the Philippines and India on climate change mitigation to help secure vulnerable internal and external supply chains," DND spokesperson Arsenio Andolong said in a statement Monday night.

This came as the DND chief met with Indian Minister of External Affairs Dr. Subrahmanyam Jaishankar and his delegation on March 26 at the DND headquarters in Camp Aguinaldo, Quezon City.

"Both officials looked forward to more robust defense and military engagements, particularly the conduct of ministerial-level meetings," Andolong noted.

Aside from this, Teodoro also thanked India's unwavering support for the Philippines' position on the West Philippine Sea/South China Sea issue.

"Minister Jaishankar reaffirmed India's commitment to upholding a rules-based international order and promoting peace and security in the Indo-Pacific Region," the DND spokesperson said.

Also, the DND chief acknowledged India's role in the ongoing modernization efforts of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) which was highlighted by the country's acquisition of three batteries of the BrahMos cruise missile system which will utilized for the Philippine Navy's Shore-Based Anti-Ship Missile System (SBASMS).

These weapons are expected to be delivered within this year.

"As the Philippines continues to develop its own credible defense posture, Secretary Teodoro acknowledged India's contribution to this effort, particularly through its participation in the modernization of the AFP," Andolong stressed.

In pursuit of deeper defense and military relations, both officials agreed to convene multi-level dialogue mechanisms, conduct practical cooperative activities focused on capability development, and increase education and training exchanges.

The Indian official shared the best practices of India's Information Fusion Centre-Indian Ocean Region (IFC-IOR) in promoting regional maritime safety through information sharing and collaboration among member countries.

New PNP chief eyes 5-year 'smart policing' dev’t plan

From the Philippine News Agency (Apr 2, 2024): New PNP chief eyes 5-year 'smart policing' dev’t plan (By Christopher Lloyd Caliwan)

PNP chief Gen. Rommel Francisco Marbil (Photo courtesy of PNP Public Information Office)

MANILA – Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Gen. Rommel Francisco Marbil is looking into the creation of a five-year development plan on the use of artificial intelligence (AI) and other modern technologies as part of smart policing strategies.

In a press briefing shortly after his first command conference at Camp Crame, Quezon City on Tuesday, Marbil said this is to address the rise in cybercrimes and other emerging security challenges.

"For instance, we are on the lookout for a red car. If we ask our police officers, they would just wait and check. But with AI and CCTV (closed circuit television) cameras, when you say red car, all red cars that pass through, you can immediately single out what you are looking for and get the details -- plate number, markings, so it's easier to find it. It will not be tedious if you use AI. It's quite expensive but this is very useful at the long end," Marbil said.

He said this would also address the evolving schemes of cybercriminals who are prey on people who are dependent on technology in their daily activities.

"Gumagaling yung mga hackers natin, kaya nga sabi ko we need to get hindi lang mga pulis natin, coming from the civilian sectors na we need to hire na mga experts natin to help us then sa programa natin na kailangan natin (Our hackers are getting good at their work, that's why I said, we need to get not only police officers, but also people coming for the civilian sectors. We need to hire experts to help us in the programs that we need), we will be investing more doon sa ating (in our) capabilities," Marbil said.

Marbil, a former PNP director for comptrollership, said the force would invest in enhancing the capabilities of the Anti-Cybercrime Group (ACG).

Revised anti-illegal drug approach

Meanwhile, Marbil said while the PNP maintains an uncompromising stance in the fight against illegal drugs, there would be a slight shift in the campaign's implementation.

“Let’s say from the region, what do we have in that region in particular. Now, we have a general amount, we tell our officers, 'you should intercept this amount of drugs'. Now, it's more specific. This is the amount of illegal drugs present in your area, you should wipe that out. It's not like the general rule setting that officers should intercept or offices are competing in terms of the amount of drug seizures. It's not like that anymore in the PNP," he said in Filipino.

He said the quota system on illegal drug seizures does not solve the problem.

"If it's 10 kg., then you catch 10 kg. It's not about who caught more. This old system is only compliance-based. Now, it’s more of key performance indicators based on the figures of every region. What is the specific problem of your region, then we will base your performance on addressing these problems," he added.

He said there would be no major revamp of ranking police officials, noting that this makes affected units unstable.

He also reminded police personnel to refrain from the unnecessary use of mobile phones while on duty.

"The DIDM (Directorate for Investigation and Detective Management) said we have radios to use. So there is no excuse for our policemen to use their cell phones,” he added.

Misamis Occidental 'insurgency-free' after death of NPA leader

From the Philippine News Agency (Mar 27, 2024): Misamis Occidental 'insurgency-free' after death of NPA leader (By Nef Luczon)

Google map of Misamis Occidental.

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY – The dismantling of the communist rebel group and the death of one of its longtime leaders are factors leading to the declaration of Misamis Occidental province as "insurgency-free."

Maj. Gen. Gabriel Viray, commander of the 1st Infantry Division (1ID), said the support of the provincial government to the Army troops was instrumental in the dismantling of the
New People's Army's (NPA) guerilla front "Sendong."

In a statement on Wednesday, Viray cited the military operation that led to the death of Aprecia Rosete, an NPA commander of the Western Mindanao Regional Party Committee, in February.

Rosete, who hails from the Davao Region, had 30 warrants of arrest for murder, extortion, and the destruction of several infrastructures in the Zamboanga Peninsula. She had been hiding under the "Sendong" front operating in Misamis Occidental before she was killed in Barangay Malagad, Dumingag town.

Viray hailed Governor Henry Oaminal for the provincial government's financial support, which helped allocate funds to reward those who facilitated the surrender or neutralization of some rebels.

"This allocation expedited our operations, fostered greater cooperation among the populace, and bolstered the efforts of our units on the ground to dismantle the last remaining guerilla front in the (Zamboanga) Peninsula and Misamis Occidental," the Army official said.

Misamis Occidental's declaration as an insurgency-free province was signed on March 3, 2024 by the leadership of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Philippine National Police (PNP); it was approved by the national government on March 11, 2024.

20 NPA rebels killed in Visayas in Q1

From the Philippine News Agency (Apr 1, 2024): 20 NPA rebels killed in Visayas in Q1 (By John Rey Saavedra)

New People's Army rebel killed in Guihulngan City, Negros Oriental (File photo courtesy of 62IB, Philippine Army)

CEBU CITY – The government continues to win against insurgency in the Visayas this year, with 44 armed encounters leading to the death of 20 New People’s Army (NPA) rebels as of March 31.

There were also 27 fighters who surrendered and four who were apprehended, reported Visayas Command (Viscom) acting commander Commodore Oscar Canlas Jr. on Monday.

“The CPP-NPA (Communist Party of the Philippines- New People’s Army) is now gasping for breath,” he said. “Their leaders continue to fall and they continue to lose valuable resources to foster their armed struggle. As such, we will sustain our momentum and will not allow them from gaining their foothold in the region, ever again.”

Apart from the losses in manpower,
Viscom also disclosed that the NPA’s capability has degraded drastically with the seizure of 68 firearms.

“Our efforts will continue to be relentless,” Canlas said, calling on NPA remnants to surrender while they still can. “We will not hesitate to use our full military might to subdue the few remaining members of the terrorist group.”

20 ex-BIFF rebels get aid from BARMM

From the Philippine News Agency (Apr 2, 2024): 20 ex-BIFF rebels get aid from BARMM (By Edwin Fernandez)

FINANCIAL AID. Sittie Janine Gamao (right), peace education division chief of the Ministry of Public Order and Safety (MPOS-BARMM), and Lt. Colonel Michael Glenn Manansala, the Army's 6th Infantry Battalion commander, hand over on Monday (April 1, 2024) the financial aid to one of the 20 former extremists who earlier surrendered to the military. The MPOS will also train the former insurgents to become peace advocates in their communities. (Photo courtesy of MPOS -BARMM)

COTABATO CITY – The Ministry of Public Order and Safety in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (MPOS-BARMM) has extended financial assistance to 20 former members of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) in support of the government's peace and reconciliation advocacy, an official said Tuesday.

Sittie Janine Gamao, MPOS peace education division chief, said each of the former members received PHP5,000 cash during ceremonies held Monday at the headquarters of the Army's 6th Infantry Battalion in Datu Piang, Maguindanao del Sur.

"Your voluntary surrender is something positive not only for you but your family and community as well," Gamao was quoted as saying in a statement Tuesday, referring to the surrenderers.

Gamao said the assistance forms part of the MPOS' program to help former local insurgents (FLIs), who will be enrolled in more aid programs to make them partners in sustaining peace in their communities.

The batch was among the BIFF members who surrendered to the Army in Datu Piang over the weekend.

Brig. Gen. Oriel Pangcog, commander of the 601st Infantry Brigade, described the surrenderers as "victims of wrong ideology."

The former extremists earlier turned in 14 various firearms and weapons, which included two homemade .50-caliber sniper rifles, four .30-caliber sniper rifles, two M14 rifles, two M16 rifles, one 81mm mortar tube, and one .45-caliber pistol.

Maguindanao del Sur Vice Gov. Nathaniel Midtimbang led the distribution of food and non-food assistance to the surrenderers, including sacks of rice and food packs from various provincial government agencies.

Wanted NPA rebel falls in Butuan City

From the Philippine News Agency (Apr 2, 2024): Wanted NPA rebel falls in Butuan City

(Image courtesy of PRO-13 Information Office)

BUTUAN CITY – A New People’s Army (NPA) rebel wanted for several crimes was arrested in Barangay Libertad here, the police confirmed on Tuesday.

Brig. Gen. Kirby John Kraft, director of the Police Regional Office in the Caraga Region, said
“Gamay,” 35, of Compostela, Davao de Oro was caught on Monday afternoon.

“He (Gamay) was involved in a shooting incident on Nov. 29, 2011 in Sitio Everlasting, Barangay Cuevas, Trento, Agusan del Sur, that resulted in the death of alias Larry and inflicted severe injuries to a certain Rodden,” Kraft said.

Gamay, a member of the
Guerrilla Front 20 under the Southern Mindanao Regional Committee, and other fellow NPA rebels also set the motorcycle of Rodden on fire.

He has a pending arrest warrant arson, murder and frustrated murder. No bail was recommended. (With a report from Alexander Lopez/PNA)

CPP/NPA-Southwest Negros/Negros Island ROC: Itib-ong ang pungsodnon demokratiko nga rebolusyon! Paigrabon ang kalayo sang inaway banwa!

Propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Philippine Revolution Web Central (PRWC) Website (Mar 29, 2024): Itib-ong ang pungsodnon demokratiko nga rebolusyon! Paigrabon ang kalayo sang inaway banwa! (Bring on the national democratic revolution!
Burn the fire of war!)

Andrea Guerrero
NPA-Southwest Negros (Armando Sumayang Jr. Command)
Negros Island Regional Operational Command (Apolinario Gatmaitan Command)
New People's Army

March 29, 2024

Ang Armando Sumayang Jr. Command-New Peoples Army (ASJC-NPA) nagapaambit sang amon malipayon kag militante nga pagsaludo sa tanan nga mga Pulang Kumander kag hangaway, mga kadre sang Partido, kag sa tanan nga mga rebolusyonaryo nga pwersa ilabi na diri sa sur nga bahin sa isla sang Negros sang aton ika-55 nga pagsukat sang NPA. Ginahatagan man naton sang pasidungog ang tanan nga mga rebolusyonaryong martir, partikular sa ila Chenee Dacalos (Ka Nikki),Jeren Vargas (Ka Alvin), Ka Rickoy (Bobby Pedro), Ka Goring (Mario Mullon), Ka Bombo (Alejo delos Reyes) kag Ka Diane (Melissa dela Peña), nga naghalad sang ila kabuhi agud mahawanan ang banas sang rebolusyon.

Malipayon kag mapagsik naton nga gina abi-abi ang panawagan sang Partido Komunista sang Pilipinas (PKP) nga manadlong kag pabakuron ang tanan nga rebolusyonaryo nga pwersa agud mapangibabawan ang mga kasaypanan kag kahuyangan sa tanan nga patag sang rebolusyonaryo nga hilikuton. Isa ini ka malahalon nga tikang agud mapasaka naton ang lebel sang aton inaway banwa sa mas mataas pa nga halintang.

Subong nga todo larga ang pagduso sang rehimen ni US-Marcos Jr. sang mga neoliberal nga mga polisiya sa ekonomiya, labi nga nagatambok ang duta sa Sur sang Negros para sa rebolusyon. Ginpasulod sang reaksyonaryo nga gobyerno ang pagpatanum sang palm oil kag ang liwat nga pagbuhi sa mga minahan, pabor sa mga interes sang dumuluong kag mga dalagko kumprador burgesya. Lapnagon man ang kawad-on sang palangabuhian, pagpang-agaw sang duta paagi sa National Greening Program (NGP) kag Integrated Forest Management Agreement (IFMA), nubo nga sweldo kag benepisyo, pagmina, demolisyon, kag relokasyon sa higad baybay nga nagpahalin sa ginatos ka mga mangingisda nga lubos nga nagapaantos sa mga pumuluyo.

Sa bilog probinsya sang Negros Occidental, ang ika-6 nga distrito ang isa sa natam-an sang grabe nga tig-ilinit bangud sa El Niño. Ginpalala pa ini sa pabaya kag korap nga reaksyonaryo nga rehimen US-Marcos II nga wala sang ginhatag nga nagakaigo nga sabat sa kahalitan nga gintuga sang El Niño. Amo ini ang isa sa mga kabangdanan nga indi malikawan sang mga pumuluyo nga magduso sa tanan nga porma sang paghimakas armado man ukon ligal.

Magabato ang hukbo kag pumuluyo. Nakaagum man kita sang mga kapaslawan kag kahuyangan sang nagligad nga mga tuig sandig sang aton nga pagtasa, apang sa pihak nga bahin, nagmadinalag-on kita subong sa pagpalapad kag nakakonsolida sang aton nga mga pwersa bisan sa malapnagon nga mga operasyon kombat sang Armed Forces Of he Philippine (AFP) kag Philippine National Police (PNP). Paagi sang aton pag-uyat sang mga sandigan nga prinsipyo kag taktika sang pagpakig-away gerilya, mahimo naton nga mapasumbag sa hangin ang kaaway kag mapabilin sila nga bulag kag bungol. Ini nagapamatuod nga ang NPA hugot nga nakaugat sa malapad nga masang ginapigos kag ginahimuslan. Superyor man ang kaaway sa kagamitan militar, apang ina nga superyoridad ginahimun-an sa wala-tupong nga pagsuporta sang malapad nga masa sang pumuluyo sa NPA, ang ila matuod nga hangaway. Paagi sang aton hugot nga paghiliusa, liwat naton nga mapapagsik ang aton rebolusyonaryo nga makina.

Ang ASJC-NPA tampad kag bug-os tagipusu-on nga pas-anon ang mabug-at kag hinanali nga mga tahas sang agraryo nga rebolusyon, pagpalapad sang baseng masa kag pagpapagsik sang armado nga paghimakas. Padayon kami nga magbalik-tuon sa mga sandigan nga prinsipyo kag teorya sang Marxismo-Lenimismo-Maoismo agud husto nga madapat ang mga taktika kag pamaagi sa paglunsad sang inaway gerilya agud lubos pa nga maalagaran ang masa.