Wed. May 25th, 2022

Government security forces have seized war materials and belongings following a clash against a group of communist New People’s Army (NPA) rebels in the hinterlands of Zamboanga del Norte, a field military commander said Thursday.

(Photo Courtesy: SUNSTAR)

Lt. Col. Nolasco Coderos Jr., the Army’s 97th Infantry Battalion (IB) commander, said the clash transpired Wednesday afternoon in the hinterland boundary of Barangays Melad and Linabo in Polanco municipality of the province.

Coderos said 97IB troopers were on security patrol when they clashed against some 15 members of the NPA’s Guerilla Front Big Beautiful Country, the remaining NPA group of the Western Mindanao Regional Party Committee in the Zamboanga Peninsula.

Coderos said the troops recovered hundreds of ammunition, assorted medical paraphernalia, foodstuff, and personal belongings the NPA rebels have abandoned after a 25-minute clash.

“This encounter was a result of collaboration with the locals after a concerned civilian reported the presence of unfamiliar persons in his farmland asking for food, money, and information about the (military) troops,” Coderos said in a statement Thursday.

“We deployed additional troops to pursue those NPAs and eventually to prevent them from inflicting damage to civilians and their property,” he added.

He noted that troops of the 53IB have clashed against the same group of NPA rebels on November 18 in the boundary of Dumingag, Zamboanga del Sur, and Sergio Osmeña Sr. of Zamboanga del Norte while the insurgents were collecting food supplies from the residents.

He said they will continue their relentless effort in coordination with the police forces to protect the peace-loving residents from NPA threats and extortion activities.

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