Alleged NPA leader arrested in Cotabato
An alleged New People’s Army (NPA) leader was arrested while another one was killed and several war materials were recovered in four separate incidents in Eastern Mindanao on Thursday.
Capt. Rhyan Batchar, spokesman of the Army’s 10th Infantry Division, said the first incident happened when the joint Army- Police team composed of 39th Infantry Battalion , Special Action Force and Cotabato Provincial Police Office arrested Ariel Rebuta alias Siring, at the vicinity of Purok Centro, Brgy Biangan, Makilala, Cotabato around 1 am.
Siring, a reported high-ranking leader of the NPA-Milisya ng Bayan of Guerrila Front was arrested by virtue of Rebuta’s warrant of arrest for possession of unlicensed firearms.
“The arresting team recovered from Rebuta’s possession three M16 Armalite rifles, 1,500 rounds of ammunition and an IED ( improvised explosive device) detonating switch,” he said.
“Rebuta was turned over to Makilala police for filing of appropriate charges,” he added.
Batchar said the second incident happened when troops 73th IB encountered a group of armed men at Sitio Malbag, Brgy Little Baguio, Malita, Davao Occidental at around 10:40 am of the same day.
Batchar said the gunmen left behind a dead body of an unidentified NPA rebel and another M16 Armalite rifle which were recovered by the troops of 73th IB.
Batchar said government forces recovered more firearms on the third encounter between troops of 25th IB and around 20 NPA rebels belonging to Guerilla Front (GF) 33 and Pulang Bagani Company (PBC) 4 in the vicinity of Purok 6, Mayaon, Montevista, Compostela Valley around 6:55 am.
Recovered war materials include “four M16 Armalite rifles, one M14 rifle, two M1 Garand rifles, one M2 Carbine rifle, one caliber .38 pistol, several personal belongings and subversive documents left by the fleeing rebels.”
Batchar said the last incident occurred when a separate group of soldiers from 25th IB who were pursuing the fleeing rebels from the earlier Montevista engaged the rebels in another 10-minute fire fight.
“The incident led to the recovery by the 25th IB troops of additional high-powered firearms comprising two M16 Armalite rifles, two M14 rifles, two M1 Garand rifle, one AK-47 rifle, an IED and several NPA personal belongings,” he said.
Batchar said one soldier was wounded. He said the gunmen :”were believed to have suffered heavy casualties manifested by bloodstains seen in the encounter site. Robina Asido/DMS