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Leftist rebel surrenders to military in Surigao

COTABATO CITY, Philippines (Xinhua) - A leftist rebel commander surrendered today to security forces in the southern Philippines.

Rochel Bayang, also know Florencio Entok, personally yielded himself to authorities in the township of Gigaguit, Surigao del Sur province, Lt. Col. Randolph Cabangbang, a military spokesman, said.

The New People's Army (NPA) has been waging a guerrilla campaign in the countryside for four decades. Military estimates placed the NPA strength at more than 5,000 men scattered in more than 60 guerrilla fronts throughout the country.

Peace talks between the government and the leftists bogged down in 2004 after the United States included the NPA and its parent body as foreign terrorist organizations.


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