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PIA Press Release

All out offensive vs NPA ordered

By Ninfa B Quirante

Catbalogan, Samar (June 18) -- The 8th Infantry Division (8th ID) Philippine Army based in Catbalogan, Samar commanding general Major General Arthur Tabaquero ordered an all out offensive against NPAs.

In a text message received by PIA-Samar, Col Armand Rico, Information Officer said that just yesterday at 8:40 AM, June 17, 2009, a platoon of soldiers from the 20th Infantry Battalion led by 1Lt Julius Muyco encountered more or less 15 NPA rebels at the vicinity of Barangay Duran, Bobon, N. Samar.

The fire fight, Rico added lasted for 15 minutes which drove away the rebels east.

In the afternoon of the same day, at about 2:15 PM, the same troops, while conducting pursuit operations encountered a bigger group, this time numbering to 50 rebels more or less five kilometres from the first encounter site.

Another fire fight ensued for an hour that made the enemies of the state scamper to different directions.

Lt Col Francis Cabugon, battalion commander of the 20th IB ordered additional troops as blocking force against the fleeing rebels.

This resulted to the recovery of subversive documents of high intelligence value and personal belongings of the NPAs.

Five government soldiers were slightly wounded while the army believes that the enemies suffered heavy casualties judging from the bloodstains on the encounter sites.

The encounter led to the marching order of Tabaquero to all field commanders to declare an all out offensive against the NPAs in Northern Samar.

Meanwhile, a high ranking official of the New People's Army in Abra surrendered to the Cordillera Police Intelligence Group after a negotiation.

Cordillera Regional Director Chief Supt. Orlando Pestaņo identified the NPA officer as Corpus Saboy alias Ka Lander who is one of the officers of Kilusang Laragan Guerilla North East operating in Malibcong, Tineg, Lagangilang and San Juan in province of Abra.

According to Pestano, Saboy is in the 11th position in the order of battle of Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Philippine National Police.

Saboy surrendered after a negotiation headed by Abra Governor Eustaquio Bersamin and is now under debriefing and tactical interrogation of Abra provincial police. (PIA-Samar with Bradley de Leon) [top]

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