TAGO, Surigao del Sur — Troops from the 401st Infantry Brigade under Colonel Romeo Gan encountered fully armed rebels at the vicinity of Barangay San Lorenzo in Prosperidad, Agusan del Sur on Tuesday morning.
The firefight between the soldiers and the rebels lasted for about five minutes. The rebels later withdrew to the west.
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The rebels were believed to be members of Guerrilla Front 19A of the North Eastern Mindanao Regional Committee of the New People’s Army (NPA).
Elements from the 29th Infantry Battalion under Lieutenant Virgilio Luma Mi conducted blocking operations toward the area where the NPA rebels fled.
The soldiers later saw a cluster of four makeshift huts along the way in Purok 7, Barangay Mabuhay in Prosperidad.
After scouring the area, the operating troops found out that one hut is abandoned while the other three were being occupied by three persons who were believed to be Militia ng Bayan (MB) members.
Also found in one of the huts were one Thompson submachine gun with magazine and 20 ammunitions, one homemade shotgun, one long whip antenna for Harris Radio and 10 sets of unused AAA batteries.
Based on the initial interview with the three suspected MB members, it was found out that one of them is a leader of the Sangay ng Partido Lokal and is responsible for enemy recruitment and mass works in the locality.
Proper filing of cases against the three persons is now being made by the 29IB in cooperation with the local police.
“I am very much thankful for the help of our enlightened brothers and sisters who have helped us in the successful apprehension of these three suspected Militia ng Bayan members after the encounter that happened between our operating troops and the NPAs,” Gan said.
Mi, for his part, encouraged residents in the barangays to continue cooperating and working with the Army by providing “timely and relevant information that would help the soldiers clear the communities of any enemy threat” for a true and lasting peace. (PR)