2 killed, 8 wounded in NPA landmine attack in Southern Philippines

January 19, 2011 11:10 am 

NABUNTURAN, Compostela Valley, Jan. 19 — Two government soldiers were killed while eight others were wounded when an improvised explosive device (IED) allegedly planted by members of communist-New People’s Army (NPA) went off on Tuesday in Southern Philippines, military official reported Wednesday.

In a press statement, Lt. Col. Joshua B. Santiago, Public Information Officer of the Army’s 10th Infantry (Agila) Division, said the new atrocity allegedly committed by the NPA was “condemned” by all sectors in the region, saying it is a “treacherous act and a grave violation” of the International Law.

He said the IED exploded at 4 a.m. on Tuesday resulting in 10 casualties at Sitio Guinobatan, Barangay Paquibato Proper, Paquibato District, Davao City.

The incident happened when security forces of the 69th Infantry Battalion (69th IB) engaged NPA rebels allegedly belonging to Pulang bagani Command 1 (PBC 1) of the CPP-NPA Southern Mindanao Regional Party Committee (SMRC), said the 10th ID PIO.

He said joint public safety activity of soldiers from 69th IB and PNP-SAF was conducted in Sitio Guinobatan, Paquibato Proper in response to the complaints of the civilians regarding the presence of NPAs who are extorting and collecting food stuffs in the communities, Col. Santiago said.

A team led by 2Lt. Bryan Malinao was deployed to the area.

As they reached the main objective, the soldiers discovered an enemy camp but immediately the NPAs fired on their position and they exploded one IED which resulted in casualties to the government troops, Col. Santiago said.

“More than 30 NPA members were encountered by my team. The fire fight lasted about 30 minutes after which, they withdrew to the different directions,” he said.

“The NPA shows their total disrespect to the Comprehensive Agreement on Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law and disobedience of the Philippine Landmines Bill just for the sake of their extortion activities,” he said.

Capt. Benjie Arciaga, CMO officer of 69th IB, said the use of IED of the NPAs is a manifestation of their violation to two international warfare agreements namely, the 1997 Ottawa Convention and the amended 1996 United Nations convention in Geneva that banned the use of anti personnel explosive devices.

Cpt Arciaga said “prior to the incident, our troops already discovered and recovered three anti personnel explosive devices at Sitio Riverside, Paquibato.

The wounded soldiers were brought to Panacan Station Hospital. (PNA)

FFC/MUC/mec

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