NPA killed in Zamboanga clash
Roel Pareño (The Philippine Star) - September 22, 2020 - 12:00am

ZAMBOANGA CITY, Philippines — A suspected New People’s Army (NPA) guerrilla was killed in an encounter in the hinterlands of Dumingag, Zamboanga del Sur yesterday morning.

The firefight, which broke out at around 10:30 a.m. in Barangay Marangan, also resulted in the recovery of four assault rifles, according to Maj. Gen. Corleto Vinluan Jr., chief of the Western Mindanao Command (Westmincom).

Troopers from the Army’s 53rd Infantry Battalion (IB) were conducting military operations when they chanced upon a band of insurgents.

Several rebels were wounded in the firefight that lasted 25 minutes, according to Brig. Gen. Leonel Nicolas, chief of the Army’s 102nd Infantry Brigade.

“The number of firearms recovered indicated the rebels suffered more casualties, forcing them to retreat,” Nicolas said.

Meanwhile, in Sulu, three Army troopers were wounded following an encounter with suspected Abu Sayyaf bandits in Patikul on Sunday.

The military said the terror group also suffered undetermined casualties during the firefight that occurred in Barangay Bungkaung.

Authorities withheld the identities of the wounded troopers until after their families are notified.

Troopers of the Army’s 45th IB were patrolling in Sitio Bud Kaha when they encountered at least 20 armed men, according to Brig. Gen. William Gonzales, chief of Joint Task Force Sulu.

A pursuit operation was launched for the bandits who retreated toward the jungle.

Pursuing troopers saw traces of blood along the bandits’ escape routes, said Lt. Col. Alaric delos Santos, spokesman for the Westmincom.

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