Philippines: 3 troops killed in communist rebel ambush| MENAFN.COM

Monday, 24 January 2022 01:54 GMT

Philippines: 3 troops killed in communist rebel ambush

(MENAFN- The Journal Of Turkish Weekly) The Philippine military confirmed Tuesday that three soldiers were killed and 13 others wounded in an ambush staged by communist rebels shortly before midnight in northern Kalinga province.
The 503rd Infantry Brigade's commander told the state-run Philippine News Agency that the ambush was preceded by a landmine blast as an army convoy was headed to a nearby command post at around 11:20 p.m. (1620) Monday in Pinukpuk township.

Brig. Gen. Paul Atal said that many of those onboard sustained injuries, and a 25-minute firefight ensued, leaving three troops dead.

The New People's Army (NPA) guerrillas, against whom Atal has vowed to file charges "for their indiscriminate use of landmines," are believed to have suffered an undetermined number of casualties.

The attack came a day after a soldier and two NPA members were killed in a clash in southern Compostela Valley province - known as a hotbed of the insurgency.

Some 50 gunmen had opened fire before noon Sunday as the troops were securing villages in the remote town of Pantakan after villagers complained of alleged extortion activities and harassment by rebels, according to the military.

Since March 1969, the NPA - the armed wing of the Communist Party of the Philippines - has been waging one of Asia's longest running insurgencies, which the military says has claimed more than 3,000 lives in the last eight years alone.

After some 10 years of relative silence, the group resurfaced in the mid-2000s, staging deadly ambushes targeting troops and police and resuming campaigns to collect "revolutionary tax" from businessmen and politicians.

Philippine authorities have tagged the rebels as notorious extortionists and blamed them for harassing banana, pineapple and rubber plantations, as well as poultry farms and mining outfits.

Peace talks between the National Democratic Front - the communist groups' political arm - and the government collapsed in early 2013 due to rebel demands that detained comrades be freed.

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