Army soldiers intercept delivery of firearms and explosives in Negros Oriental

December 16, 2012 11:24 am 

DUMAGUETE CITY, Dec. 15 – Army soldiers have recovered a cache of high-powered firearms, C4 plastic explosive, explosives components and food stuffs from a clearing in Mayaposi, Mabinay,Negros Oriental on Friday.

Operatives of the 302nd Brigade, the 79th Infantry Battalion and the Alpha Company of the 12th Infantry Battalion found the following: two Cal. 5.56 mm M16 assault rifles, five alloy magazines for M16 rifle with 20 rounds capacity, 112 pieces of M16 ammunition, six pieces of 40mm ammunition for grenade launchers, two rifle grenades, 35 meters of detonating cord, six pounds supply charge TNT (Trinitrotoluene), 1.5 pounds of C-4 explosives, one sack of rice, 100 cans of 555 sardines, three boxes of Payless noodles, four reams of Fortune cigarettes, three packs of Skyflakes crackers and four packs of 3-in1 Nescafe instant coffee.

According to Capt. Roberto F. Salvador of the Alpha Company of the 12th IB, the residents tipped off the operative of the presence of a cargo left in the clearing.

Initial reports said a cargo truck without plate number loaded with sugar cane from Negros Oriental arrived in the area early Friday morning and dropped the items.

There were no witnesses who could identify the bearer and recipient of the confiscated cargoes.

Army authorities believed the stash of high-powered firearms, explosives and explosive components were intended for the Sangay sa partido sa Platoon, Central Komiteng Rehiyon Negros of the New People’s Army (NPA) operating in the hinterlands of Himamaylan City and Kabankalan City in Negros Occidental and Tayasan town in Negros Oriental.

The delivery could be part of a large tactical offensive by the NPA against government troops, to include soldiers and policemen, as part of the upcoming 43rd anniversary of the NPA on December 29, Salvador said.

Capt. Salvador said it was not unusual that the NPA insurgents employ strategies similar to terrorists in setting up land mines using C-4 plastic explosive and TNT chemicals in tactical operations launched by the NPA against government forces.

Army officials still have to determine the source of the C-4 and TNT chemical explosive materials as civilians do not and cannot ordinarily acquire these.

The Army captain also said that it appeared the chemical explosive materials could be used to rig land mines along the Bais-Mabinay-Kabankalan road, a route normally taken by Army and police officials on their way to Negros Occidental.

Col. Francisco Patrimonio, 302nd Brigade Commander, lauded the concern and support of civilians in the government’s anti-insurgency campaign.

“The NPA unit was responsible for the extortion and terroristic activities in the hinterland communities”, he said.

Meanwhile, Army authorities are also looking at possibilities that the high powered assault rifles, rifle grenades, 40 mm grenades and M16 ammunition belong to the government.

The serial numbers of the firearms were defaced but bore markings that appear to be intended for the Armed Forces of the Philippines.(PNA)

GHG/JFP

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