|New People’s Army (NPA)|
By Gilbert Bayoran
BACOLOD CITY, Philippines – President Duterte ordered the military to intensify operations against the New People’s Army (NPA) in the Negros island region, after a series of atrocities committed by the communist rebels, including the killing of six policemen and a civilian in Guihulngan City, Negros Oriental.
Maj. Gen. Jon Aying, 3rd Infantry Division commander, said President Duterte gave the order when he met with military officials in the Visayas led by Lt. Gen. Oscar Lactao, AFP Central Command chief, last Thursday night in Dumaguete City.
Aying said the President told them that security operations would focus on the NPA once the military has cleared Marawi City of members of the Maute group. More than 100 soldiers and policemen have been killed since the terrorists attacked the city last May 23.
Ka Oris, spokesman of the NPA, lauded the successful rebel attacks in Negros and in other parts of the country against government forces. The rebels claimed that they recovered at least 300 firearms in the operations.
Aying said that one battalion of the Army’s 3rd Infantry Division deployed in Mindanao is expected to return to Negros within one month to resume the fight against communist guerrillas.
On Thursday, Duterte conferred posthumous awards on the six police officers killed by NPA rebels.
Duterte presented the awards and P100,000 cash assistance to the relatives of the slain policemen during their wake at the Guihulngan City Hall.
The President also distributed new handguns, cell phones and medals to three injured policemen who survived the NPA ambush.
The Special Investigation Task Force headed by Senior Supt. Henry Binas, police director of Negros Oriental, is now investigating the killing of the six policemen.
Aying said police units are the main targets of recent NPA operations.
Read the full story at PhilStar