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Military foils NPA attempt to ambush relief convoy to Samar

MANILA, Philippines - Two New People’s Army (NPA) rebels were killed by alert government security forces who foiled the rebels’ plot to ambush a government relief convoy bound for the storm-devastated Samar province in Matnog, Sorsogon early Tuesday morning.

Col. Joselito Kakilala, 902rd Brigade commander based in the province, identified the slain NPA leaders as Ka Abel, NPA commander in Sorsogon and Ka Win, Sentro de Gravidad NPA commander in Bicol, a rebel unit under the overall leadership of Jesus Guelas alias Ka Gapa and Ka Insoy.

“An NPA plan to ambush a government relief convoy to Samar-Leyte was foiled. Two NPA commanders were killed in the fighting by joint Army elements,” Kakilala said.

He added that the troops, who were conducting security patrol, also captured a 19-year-old rebel who was wounded during the fighting that took place at about 5:25 a.m. in Balocawe, Matnog town.

High-powered firearms including three M16 rifles, a Baby Armalite, an M14 rifle, a .45 caliber pistol and several pieces of improvised explosive device were also seized by the troops during clearing operations.

Matnog now serves as the key supply point of government and non-government relief goods being shipped via land for the thousands of Typhoon Yolanda-ravaged residents in Samar and Leyte provinces.

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