TUGUEGARAO CITY, Philippines- Major General Paul Talay Atal said military operations will continue as long as the army are receiving information from local residents regarding rebel activity.
This was the statement of 5th Infantry Division Commander Atal in response to their recent encounters with the communist rebel group New People’s Army (NPA).
General Atal said the continuous tipping off of locals signify that citizens are already “displeased” with the “abuse” and “oppression” of the NPA in the area.
In an encounter in Echague, Isabela on Sunday, November 12, a soldier died while 11 others from the 86th IB were injured. In the same day, two soldiers of the 24th IB also got injured in a separate clash in Barangay Alangatin, Tubo, Abra.
Government forces also engaged in an earlier encounter with the rebels in Balbalan, Kalinga on Wednesday, November 8.
The army said the recent operations were a result of citizens tipping information to them.
Troops were able to recover high-powered weapons from the encounter while the rebels fled back to their hideouts.
Meanwhile, Atal encouraged rebels who are “fed up” with NPA’s nefarious acts and commanders’ human rights abuses, to surrender under the Comprehensive Local Integration Program (CLIP) in order to receive better livelihood and housing.