BANCASI, Butuan City – An NPA terrorist was killed and another one was captured while several war materiel were recovered in a series of encounters between troops of 23rd Infantry Battalion and CPP-NPA terrorists on August 29, 2019, in Brgy Segunda, Municipality of Esperanza, Agusan del Sur.

A platoon of 23IB encountered more or less five (5) CPP-NPA terrorists (CNTs) believed to be members of Weakened Guerilla Front 88 of the North Central Mindanao Regional Committee (NCMRC) in the mountainous area of Brgy Segunda of same town around 9:40 in the morning after civilian residents reported the presence of fully armed men conducting teach-in and indoctrination.

According to Lt Col Francisco Molina Jr, 23IB Commanding Officer, “the CNTs did not expect that the residents in the area will disclose their whereabouts. After a five (5) minute firefight, the troops found the body of the dead NPA and subsequently captured another one after troops surrounded the area.” He added that the troops recovered one (1) .22 caliber rifle; one (1) anti-personnel mine; and twenty (20) meters electrical wire at the encounter site.

“Around 5:10 in the afternoon of same day, a pursuit operation was conducted in Brgy Segunda which resulted to a twenty-five (25) minutes firefight between troops of 23IB and more or less ten (10) CNTs believed to be members of the same group encountered by said unit earlier that day. Reports revealed that there was no casualty on the side of the government while it was undetermined from the terrorist’s side moreover, one (1) AK-47 rifle, one (1) cal. 22 rifle and several war materiel such as eighteen (18) magazines for AK-47 rifle; two thousand (2,000) rounds of Ctg 7.62mm ammunitions for AK-47 rifle; five hundred (500) rounds Ctg. 5.56mm ammunitions for M16 rifle; three (3) bandoleers; nineteen (19) ponchos, two (2) cellphones with SIM cards; one (1) medicine kit; one (1) kilo ammonium nitrate; and various subversive documents with high intelligence value were recovered after troops cleared and searched the area”, Lt Col Molina said.

In his statement, Col Maurito L Licudine, Commander of 402nd Infantry Brigade said, “We have been monitoring the movement of said group in the area. We laud the courage of the residents of Brgy Segunda that despite the threat, they still provided information on the presence of the CNTs. We shall not stop going offer the CNTs because they only bring hardship and misery to the people. They destroy families and hamper peace and development”.

“We reiterate our call to the remaining CNTs to surrender and live peacefully with their families. There are many ways in solving our differences and armed revolution is certainly not one of them. With the support of the civilians on our side, we shall relentlessly pursue you. You either surrender or be killed”, Col Licudine added.

The cadaver of the dead NPA was appropriately turned over to the LGU of Esperanza while the captured NPA was remanded to the Municipal Police Station of Esperanza for proper disposition. Upon confirmation of their identities, respective families will be notified.

Since July of this quarter, the 402nd Brigade intensified campaign against the CNTs resulted to the surrender of four hundred fifty five (455) CNTs and members of Underground Movement Organizations (UGMOs) and eighteen (18) encounters which resulted to the recovery of eight (8) firearms and killing of several CNTs to include two (2) recovered dead NPA in the encounter site.