2 Army soldiers killed, 4 hurt in Isabela clash with NPAs

CAMP MELCHOR DELA CRUZ, Gamu, Isabela — Two Army soldiers were killed and four others were wounded in a gun battle between suspected New People’s Army (NPA) rebels and soldiers in Sitio Diarao Baba, Dicamay 2, Jones, Isabela, before dawn on Friday, the military said.

Army Captain Jefferson Somera, 5th Infantry Division spokesperson, identified the fatalities as Army Sergeant Magno Bagioan of Abra and Private First Class Romeo Mayos of Mountain Province.

The coffins bearing their remains are expected to be at the Enlisted Personnel Hall at Camp Melchor dela Cruz here for necrological services on Friday night.

Meanwhile, the wounded soldiers, 1Lt. Joshua Barrio, Sgt. Arnold Mangawit, Private First Class Gilbert Pablo and Private First Class Novel Maramag, were brought to the 5th ID Station Hospital for confinement after initial treatment at a private hospital.

The firefight occurred at 4:47 a.m. Friday when the government soldiers chanced upon the rebels while on security patrol.

After the exchange of fire, the insurgents allegedly dragged their slain or wounded comrades as they withdrew to the mountains.

Somera said the Army pursuit operation against the NPA rebels is still ongoing. PNA-northboundasia.com