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Friday, Jul. 04, 2008 at 10:15 AM
MAGsasakapil@hotmail.com 213-241-0906 337 Glendale Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90026
The communist New People’s Army (NPA) has apparently intensified its rebellious campaign as it has launched attacks on government stablishments and a private-owned business for allegedly not paying its demanded “revolutionary tax.”
NPA INTENSIFIES ATTACKS, MILITARY REPORTS
Manila-- The communist New People’s Army (NPA) has apparently intensified its rebellious campaign as it has launched attacks on government stablishments and a private-owned business for allegedly not paying its demanded “revolutionary tax.”
MINDANAO ARMED CLASHES
A police and a fireman were confirmed wounded when still undetermined number of NPA rebels raided a police station in Banay-Banay town in the coastal province of Davao Oriental around 9:30 a.m. yesterday.
The rebels took away seven M-16 rifles and three .9mm pistols from the police on duty.
One of the wounded policemen in he raid, PO3 Abdul Nasser Pasian, said he was outside the police station doing a painting job when men on board two Isuzu Elf vehicles arrived.
“I only thought those people were staging a protest rally nearby since they had placards,” he said.
The police station is located near the municipal hall of Banay-Banay.
The policemen on duty then said they were surprised when the station was strafed by at least 100 armed men from the trucks, some of whom wearing military uniforms.
During the attack, Banay-Banay chief of police Sr. Inspector Dequencio Panti was in a seminar in Mati City. He immediately called for re-enforcements upon learning of the incident.
Police and government soldiers were sent out to pursue the rebels, who were believed to belong to the NPA’s “Front 18” group, led by a certain Kumander Lando and Kumander Noli.
ARMED CONFLICT IN THE VISAYAS
Another group of communist rebels also set fire to a renewable energy project of the government.
The military said extortion was the motive behind the rebels’ torching of a solar panel in the municipality of Esperanza in the island province of Masbate early this week.
Col. Ariel Bernardo, commander of the Army’s 901st Infantry Brigade, said the solar panel is a Philippine Rural Electrification project of the national government and the government of France.
Bernardo said the third district of Masbate comprising the towns of Esperanza, Cataingan and Placer is the target for extortion of the NPA.
This attack has delayed the construction of the project.
Meanwhile, three persons were killed and 12 wounded yesterday when NPA insurgents threw a grenade into a bakery in the southern province of Compostella Valley.
The incident happened just before dawn in Nabunturan town, local Army official Lt. Richard Villaflor said.
The bakery was targeted after its owners refused to pay demands from the NPA for extortion money, known as “revolutionary taxes,” Villaflor said.
No other details were given about the attack or those killed.
Meanwhile, the military discovered late Tuesday the shallow grave of Josefino Estaniel, a pastor of the Seventh Day Adventist Church who was kidnapped by the NPA in May, a regional military spokesman said.
Estaniel was “tortured before he was executed and buried,” said spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Kurt Decapia.
The military was led to the grave on the outskirts of Davao City by civilian informants. The pastor was apparently killed because of NPA suspicions he was helping the military with its anti-insurgency operations, Decapia said.
CAGAYAN VALLEY SKIRMISHES
Relatedly, the Army had placed the whole Cagayan Valley under full alert following intelligence reports indicating rebel plans to bomb and burn various private and government vital installations in the region.
This came also after a group of seven heavily armed men, now identified as rebels under the leadership of one Edison Erese alias “Ka Jerry,” burned a cell site tower at a remote village of Lallo town in Cagayan province last weekend.
According to Maj. Gen. Melchor Dilodilo, commanding general of the 5th Infantry Division, said the rebel plans were discovered from documents seized from Randy Malayao, the reported head of the NPA in Northeast Luzon who, Army sources said, goes by the nom de guerre Salvador del Pueblo.
Dilodilo said the order to heighten security to vital establishments came in the wake of the incident where suspected NPA rebels burned a Globe cell site tower in Kabayabasan, Lallo last Saturday. The attack cost the telecommunications firm around P200 million in income losses and damage to property.
Malayao was arrested in Manila last May by agents of the Intelligence Service of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, Army Intelligence and the 5th ID.
The NPA, the 5,000-member armed wing of the Communist Party of the Philippines, has been waging a 39-year armed campaign across the country. It raises funds largely by extorting money from rural businesses. AFP, PNA, Gina Peralta-Elorde and Ted Boehnert
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