CAMP SIONGCO, Awang, Maguindanao: Soldiers from the 65th Infantry Battalion (65 IB) killed two New People’s Army (NPA) rebels in a brief encounter Sunday in Talakag town in Bukidnon province. The 10-minute gunfight started when the NPA members fired at soldiers dispatched to check on the reported presence of rebels in Barangay San Rafael, Talakag collecting protection money from hapless residents. Lt. Col. Benjamin Pajarito Jr., commanding officer of 65 IB, said Tuesday the soldiers were forced to return fire when rebels attacked them from different directions. Pajarito said the rebels scampered away after the still unidentified two NPA members got killed by the advancing soldiers. Soldiers also recovered an M14 and two M16 assault rifles along their escape route.