Five members of the New People’s Army (NPA) were killed during an encounter with the 730th Combat Group of the Philippine Air Force in Barangay Mataas na Pulo, Nasugbu town, Batangas Wednesday afternoon.
The clash took place 1: 45 p.m., Southern Luzon Command spokesperson Major Angelo Guzman said.
Bodies of the slain rebels were all recovered by the military.
“A squad from my unit was conducting a combat patrol when they came upon more or less 10 rebels along a deep creek in a 15-minute firefight,” 730th Combat Group head Major Francisco Mangubat said.
“They were responding to reports regarding the presence of armed men in the area,” Mangubat said.
Soldiers who conducted clearing operations later recovered two M-14 rifles, an M-16 automatic rifle and a carbine.
Two civilians were slightly wounded in the clash. One was identified as 50-year-old Edwin Coronel and the other a 14-year-old boy.
Guzman said the two were immediately brought to Apacible Memorial Hospital in Nasugbu for medical assistance. Both are now in stable condition.
“About three weeks ago, we monitored that a section of the MRGU (Main Regional Guerilla Unit) of the NPA operating in Mindoro had moved to Batangas. We immediately alerted our troops there to watch out for their presence in the area,” Southern Luzon Command head Lt. Gen. Ricardo R. Visaya said.
He added that there is a big possibility that that the armed group the troops encountered in Nasugbu is the same MRGU section earlier monitored.