Army, NPA clash in Isabela amid monsoon rains; soldier killed
Alexis Romero (The Philippine Star) - August 21, 2013 - 5:30pm

MANILA, Philippines - Despite the heavy rains and floods caused by the southwest monsoon, a clash between Army troops and communist rebels occurred in Isabela last Tuesday, killing one soldier and wounding three others.

1st Lt. Rowena Abayon, spokesperson of the Army’s 5th division, said the encounter happened at around 11:45 p.m. in Purok 1, Barangay Balagan in San Mariano town.

Members of the 52nd Division Reconnaissance Company were conducting a security patrol when they encountered about 29 members of the New People’s Army (NPA).

Abayon said the insurgents are believed to be members of a local communist party under a certain Joey Ramos.

Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) public affairs chief Lt. Col. Ramon Zagala said the rebels could be conducting extortion activities and planning an attack using explosives.

One soldier, Pfc. Greisman Atalli was killed during the clash while three others were wounded.

The injured soldiers, identified as Cpl. Steve Bimmoy, Pfc. Roque Ganalon, and Pvt. Rafael Langao, were brought to the Camp Melchor dela Cruz Station Hospital. Attali’s body, meanwhile, was brought to Funeraria Ramos in Ilagan City.

Soldiers recovered two improvised explosive devices and six backpacks with subversive documents from the rebels.

“Although the military is focused on supporting disaster relief and rescue operations in Luzon, the AFP will continue its security patrols to protect civilian communities from the violence waged by the NPA,” Zagala said.

ARMED FORCES OF THE PHILIPPINES BARANGAY BALAGAN CAMP MELCHOR CRUZ STATION HOSPITAL DIVISION RECONNAISSANCE COMPANY FUNERARIA RAMOS GREISMAN ATALLI ILAGAN CITY JOEY RAMOS NEW PEOPLE RAFAEL LANGAO
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