Troops, NPA clash amid intensified ops in Lanao

Military troops engaged 10 communist terrorists in a fierce gunfight in Lanao del Sur on July 28.

Combined troops of 15th Division Reconnaissance Company and 49th, 55th, and 82nd Infantry Battalions discovered an enemy outpost while conducting security operations, resulting in a fierce gun battle with 10 communist terrorists in Barangay Sabala Bantayao, Lumba Bayabao at 9:15am Sunday.

Troops conducted the operation after being tipped off by civilians of the foraging and extortion activities of members of Guerilla Front 12, Sub-Regional Committee 5 in the area.

Two soldiers incurred minor wounds while casualties on communist rebels are yet to be determined.

Brig. Gen. Romeo Brawner, Jr., 103rd Bde Commander, said military troops will exhaust every means to rid Lanao del Sur of the enemy’s presence and influence. He encouraged local terrorists to surrender and avail of the government’s Enhanced Comprehensive Livelihood and Integration Program.

“People’s involvement and vigilance are crucial in proactive actions taken to address insurgency and terrorism in the area. This is well emphasized in the whole-of-nation approach pursuant to Executive Order No. 70,” said Lt. Gen. Cirilito Sobejana, commander of Western Mindanao Command.

“With more reasons we are convinced to engage and empower communities to take an active role in the realization of this holistic goal, but the armed forces will not be remiss in sustaining military actions to defeat terrorist groups in the area,” added Sobejana.

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