Al Jacinto, Arab News
Wednesday 16 August 2006
Last Update 16 August 2006 12:00 am
ZAMBOANGA CITY, 16 August 2006 — At least two communist rebels were reported killed and a policemen was wounded in fierce fighting yesterday in the southern province of Surigao del Sur.
Field reports reaching the military’s Southern Command headquarters here in Zamboanga City said about 100 New People’s Army (NPA) guerrillas attacked a police station in the town of San Agustin, sparking a gunbattle.
Chief Superintendent Antonio Nañas, police chief of the Caraga region of northeastern Mindanao, said about 100 rebels stormed the police station around 11:15 a.m.
The rebels entered the police station by pretending to be bringing a rape victim. They then opened fire, wounding an officer and sparking an hour-long clash, Nañas said.
About a dozen policemen were manning the station when the raid took place, he said.
During the clash, two rebels were killed and three others were wounded, but the casualties were taken away by their comrades, said Nañas.
“Out men were outnumbered, but not outfought,” he said.
“The rebels fled in haste and left two dead comrades,” Nañas said.
Military reports said at least five of the attackers were killed and security forces were still pursuing them.
Last week, the military said 10 rebels were killed in clashes in Kapalong town in Davao del Norte province.
Sporadic clashes continue in the countryside after government peace talks with the rebels collapsed in 2004 after the United States and European Union included the Communist Party of the Philippines and the National Democratic Front, its political wing, and the NPA to its list of foreign terrorist organization on Manila’s prodding.
During 2005, the police lost around 75 assault rifles and pistols in about a dozen attacks.
President Arroyo has ordered the military to crush the insurgency and set aside one billion pesos for the military to help fight insurgency and terrorism.
Launched in 1969, the CPP-led insurgency started flourished during Marcos dictatorship and reached its peak in 1988 when its regular fiighters was placed by the military at 22,000. Infighting, however, weakened the movement in the 90s.