3 suspected NPA rebels killed in Cagayan clash

CASUALTIES. The bodies of suspected New People's Army fighters found in Maguilling, Piat town after an armed encounter between rebels and government soldiers in the boundary of Piat and Sto. Niño, Cagayan on Maundy Thursday (April 15, 2022). Soldiers and police processed the clash site and recovered items left by the fleeing rebels.(Photo from Philippine National Police-Cagayan)

TUGUEGARAO CITY – Three suspected New People’s Army (NPA) rebels were killed in an armed encounter with government soldiers in the boundary of Piat and Sto. Niño, Cagayan on Maundy Thursday.

Cagayan Police spokesperson, Capt. Isabelita Gano, said Friday the gun battle erupted at about 10:30 p.m. in Virginia, Sto. Niño town but the remains of the rebels were found in Maguilling, Piat town.

The slain suspected rebels were identified as Saturnino Lao Agunoy alias Peping, head of the Regional Organizing Department; Mark Canta alias Uno, of the Giyang Pampulitika/Kilusang Larangang Gerilya (GPKLG) West, Komprob Cagayan; and a certain Val, medical officer of the GPKLG.

Sto. Niño police said they were informed of the clash between the rebels and soldiers, prompting them to put up a “high-risk checkpoint” and verified with hospitals whether there were casualties brought for treatment.

The 17th Infantry Battalion led by 2Lt. Josua Arpon, 501st Brigade operations chief, initiated a combat operation and engaged with 15 communist rebels led by a certain Ferdinand Bautista alias Ka Edgar/Simoy in an area between Virginia, Sto. Niño and Maguiling, Piat, Cagayan.

Army Capt. Rigor Pamittan, 5th Infantry Division spokesperson, said Agunoy has pending arrest warrants – 12 cases of qualified assault upon an agent of a person in authority with PHP120,000 bail bond each; two cases of qualified assault with murder, no bail; arson with PHP24,000 bail bond; murder with no bail; and rebellion with PHP200,000 bail.

The rest of the suspected rebels allegedly fled toward the northwestern part of Cagayan.

Personnel of the Provincial Explosive Ordnance Disposal and Canine Unit and Scene of the Crime Operation, as well as Army soldiers recovered from the encounter site two cal. 45 pistols, a hand grenade, a backpack with a laptop, a mobile phone with charger; personal devices and medical supplies; and anti-government documents with “high intelligence value.”

The Communist Party of the Philippines - NPA is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines. (PNA)

Source: Business Diary Philippines

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