DAVAO CITY, Philippines (Xinhua) – The military today said five leftist rebels including a rebel leader were killed in a clash with government troops in the southern Philippines early this month.
Major Eugenio Julio Osias IV, spokesperson of the government Army’s 4th Infantry Division, said families of the New People’s Army (NPA) rebels confirmed to the military the death of the five guerrillas in an encounter in Calabuan village, Esperanza town in the southern province of Agusan del Sur on Oct. 6.
The dead included Rcardo Manili alias Joker, commanding officer of the NPA’s Northeastern Mindanao Regional Operations Command in the resources-rich Caraga region, according to Osias.
“These rebels were among the group of NPA gunmen encountered by the army’s 5th Scout Rangers Company where 12 high-powered firearms were also recovered by the government troops,” Osias said in a text message to Xinhua.
Osias said the slain rebel leader was responsible in several violent NPA operations in the southern region of Mindanao, including the attack last year of the town hall of Medina, Misamis Oriental province, burning of equipment of a mining firm in Claveria town, also in Misamis and liquidation of several village officials in the region.