The New People’s Army (NPA) continues to suffer massive losses in the Cordillera as joint military and police troops unearthed an arms cache in Barangay Tabacda, Tubo, Abra two days before Christmas Day.
Lt. Col. Sonny Gonzales, commanding officer of the 71st Infantry Battalion, said in a news release Sunday that five rifles – two M16, one Baby Armalite, one M14, and one Springfield – were discovered on Thursday after locals guided soldiers and police forces to the arms cache.
All villages in Abra have declared the NPA persona non-grata due to the rebels’ abuses.
“We will pursue and work for peace to ensure the total defeat of NPA while working side by side with all Filipinos, especially during the Yuletide season as terrorist surrenders continue. We will welcome returning NPA members with a red carpet because they are brother Filipinos,” Brig. Gen. Krishnamurti Mortela, commander of the 702nd Infantry Brigade, said in a statement.
The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) – NPA is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines.
The Anti-Terrorism Council also formally designated the National Democratic Front as a terrorist organization on June 23, 2021, citing it as “an integral and separate part” of the CPP-NPA that was created in April 1973.