In line with the government’s ongoing efforts to restore peace in the countryside, troopers of the Capiz-based 3rd Infantry Division have successfully captured a large New People’s Army (NPA) camp during operations in Barangay Igcabugao, Igbaras town, Iloilo Wednesday afternoon.
Major Ray Tiongson, 3rd Infantry Division spokesperson, said the assault took place shortly before 2 p.m. yesterday.
He added troopers from the 82nd Infantry Battalion, a field unit of the 3rd Infantry Division, spearheaded the attack.
Lt. Col. Aldwine Alamase, 82nd Infantry Battalion commanding officer, said his men were conducting community security operations in said village when they were fired upon by undetermined number of lawless armed elements believed to be members of Southern Front, Komiteng Rehiyonal-Panay (SF, KR-P) of the CPP-NPA.
The troopers retaliated, forcing the rebels to retreat in different directions after a five-minute firefight.
Alamase said government forces sustained no casualties in the encounter.
Soldiers conducting pursuit operations saw several blood trails along the NPA’s route of withdrawal, indicating that several rebels were wounded in the clash.
After the firefight, the residents provided information to the troops that enabled them to track the location of the NPA camp.
Alamase said the captured NPA camp has an estimated area of 700 square meters and can accommodate around 100 personnel.
It has three kitchens, numerous foxholes, makeshifts intended for training instructions and meetings, and a firing range.
The troops recovered training paraphernalia, wires of improvised explosive devices or landmines and personal belongings.
Prior to the encounter, the troops received reports from the residents about the presence of lawless armed elements and were complaining that these NPA rebels were asking for money and food supplies from the civilians. PNA