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PIA Press Release

Fighting insurgency remains major thrust of Cordillera PNP

by Lito Dar

Baguio City (20 June) -- "The Cordillera Police will continue to fight the philosophy destroying the system of government. There must be only one government, and government presence can be felt by providing government services particularly in the far flung areas,"

Police Regional Office Cordillera (PRO-Cor) Director PCSupt Orlando Pestaņo this is the statement made this statement in the June 8r flag ceremony, that also marks his first 100 days in office at Camp Bado Dangwa.

In his 100 days accomplishment report, Pestaņo outlined that fighting insurgency remains as one of his major priority thrusts, and the arrest of New People's Army (NPA) leader Jovencio Balweg Sr. dealt a severe setback in the underground movement within the Cordillera Region. Balweg's arrest also led to the surrender of his wife and daughter in law.

Since Pestaņo's assumption into office on February 2009 up to the first week of June, 21 communist terrorists were captured and surrendered. On the latest report of PRO-Cor, another high-ranking official of the NPA in Abra, Corpus Saboy alias Ka Lander, has just surrendered to its Intelligence Group, after a negotiation headed by Abra Governor Eustaquio Bersamin. Ka Lander is in the 11th position in the order of battle of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the PNP.

The Task Force Abra is still in the forefront of establishing governance in the municipalities of Tineg and Malibcong, Abra in providing services that have long been neglected due to intense communist influence. Logistics supplies is continuous to be provided in the lower units for their security operations to have a better police services to improved their capability to move, shoot and communicate in answer to the distress calls of the citizenry.

The Cordillera Police also continues to advocate the promotion of human rights through the regular police information and continuing education in the Police Provincial Offices down to the lower units and the conduct of seminars in coordination with other agencies and schools.

The strength of the communist New People's Army (NPA) has been reduced drastically by more than 30 percent since President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo ordered the military to defeat the country's four-decade old insurgency problem three years ago.

Figures from the AFP indicated that at least 2,296 insurgents have been neutralized from 2006 up to May this year, bringing down their strength to just about 4,874, and this current NPA strength is the lowest since the 1980's when the communist movement reached its peak strength of more than 24,000. (PIA) [top]

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