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PIA Press Release
2008/11/20

Christmas break starts first week of December for Army troops

ICC Iligan City (20 November) -- The situation in Lanao del Norte (LDN) is not just for the military alone to solve but needs a multi agency cooperative approach in order to come up with a sustainable solution to the problem.

This was emphasized by Maj. Benedicto Manquiquis, Commander of the First Civil Military Operations (CMO) Unit, CMO Group, Philippine Army, during a media forum at the Information Command Center (ICC), Philippine Information Agency, this city.

"Let us remember that this law enforcement operations against the lawless MILF group (LMG) of Bravo is not supposed to be the job of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) but of the Philippine National Police (PNP)," he said.

However, the firearms of the PNP is no match to those used by the LMG who conducted the atrocities in Kauswagan and Kolambugan, LDN, last Aug. 18, who were heavily armed, that is why the AFP came into the picture.

"Dahil sa dami ng kanilang armas, kami yung nakipaglaban sa kanila (Because of the number of their firearms, it is now the Philippine Army who running after them)," Manquiquis said.

Because of the seriousness to solve the problem, once and for all, we will celebrate Christmas either before or after Dec. 25. That is the reality that all the Army troops in the Lanao provinces have accepted.

"So we have started to schedule the Christmas leave of the soldiers. Some will be going home for the break starting the first week of December, on until the New Year and others already in the month of February," Manquiquis added. (RCA/PIA 10) [top]

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