Two NPA members arrested in North Cotabato: military
Two members of New People’s Army (NPA) were arrested while more than a dozen high-powered firearms were recovered in a joint military and police operation in North Cotabato province on Friday.
Capt. Rhyan Batchar, spokesman of the Army’s 10th Infantry Division, said government troops were conducting security operation when they saw the two men in the vicinity of Brgy Katipunan, Kidapawan City, North Cotabato around 12:30 am.
“The combined troops of 39th Infantry Battalion, Kidapawan City Police, and Cotabato Province Public Safety and Security Company (CPPSSC) were checking on reports from the populace that armed men who were planning to conduct atrocities against civilians were seen at Purok 3 of the said barangay,” he said.
“While proceeding to Brgy Katipunan, the joint police-military team chanced upon two persons carting suspicious objects which were later found to be two M16 rifles,” he said.
Batchar identified the arrested persons as Wowia Boton and George Cuyo. Batchar said they are NPA members under alias Choi of Guerila Front 53.
“The arrested duo later revealed the location of an arms cache where additional 18 M16 armalite rifles were discovered and recovered,” he said
Batchar said the arrested rebels were turned over to Kidapawan police for filing of appropriate charges.
He said Major General Noel Clement, the 10ID commander, lauded the police and military forces involved in the successful security operation against the NPA and gave assurance of the military’s respect and observance of the Human Rights (HR) and International Humanitarian Law (IHL).
“We were able to prevent the NPA rebels from wrecking fear and havoc among the civilians,” Clement said.
“We have seen here the strong cooperation of the concerned people who were fed up by the presence of the NPA rebels who still continue to threaten, extort and recruit hapless civilians,” he added.
Batchar said because of the incident the police and military have intensified its security measures. Robina Asido/DMS