THE New People’s Army (NPA) is planning to launch attacks in Davao City a day before President Rodrigo Duterte delivers his second State of the Nation Address, Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Ronald de la Rosa said on Monday.
“We monitored something from the left. The NPA, they will make some pre-SONA attacks, harassment. We uncovered that it will be in Davao. They will disrupt Davao before SONA so we are preparing for that,” De la Rosa said in a news conference.
The government is doing some back channel negotiations for the resumption of peace talks with the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP), the political wing of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP).
De la Rosa said government troops will fight back when attacked.
“If we can attain peace through peace talks, it will be better. But if [the Reds]are not sincere, we cannot do anything about it but to have war. These are hard realities in life. I don’t know if they will listen to their kings abroad but if they can handle these fighters on the ground, it would be best if they will stop the war,” he said.
“If we are being attacked, then we have to fight back,” the police chief added.
The PNP chief said no other threat to the SONA, such as a terror attack, was monitored.
“As for the moment, we have not received anything specific, we have not monitored any terror attacks,” de la Rosa noted.
However, he called on the public to cooperate and help the authorities safeguard peace and order.
The military also has not monitored any threat.
“We have not seen any threats yet but we assure (the public) that we are closely monitoring the security for the SONA preparations,” Col. Edgard Arevalo told reporters in a news conference.
The House of Representatives, where the President will deliver his SONA onJuly 24, earlier said it is bracing for possible attacks by drug syndicates and terrorist groups who may want to sow chaos. DEMPSEY REYES