DAVAO CITY – The communist New People’s Army (NPA) operating in Compostela Valley province suffered another setback after government troops destroyed one of its biggest guerrilla fronts in the region.
Capt. Jerry Lamosao, spokesperson of the Army’s 10th Infantry Division, said Wednesday that the 66th Infantry Battalion troops dismantled the NPA’s Guerilla Front (GF) 25 belonging to the Sub-Regional Committee (SRC) 1, Southern Mindanao Regional Committee.
GF 25 is the second NPA front declared dissolved by the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) following continued military operations that forced the rebels to surrender, Lamosao said.
The first NPA front declared dissolved was GF 27.
Lamosao said GF 25 suffered losses since January when 24 of its regular members surrendered to the 66th IB, as well as the death of two fighters and the wounding of several others in a series of military operations.
In mid-June, Lamosao said GF 25 was left with nine members and failed to recruit more.
According to Lamosao, the NPA’s SRC 1 failed to revive the GF 25, which also lost its mass base Komiteng Rebolusyonaryo sa Munisipalidad (KRM) and the Komiteng Rebolusyonaryo sa Baryo. This also includes the Compostela Farmer’s Association, the NPA’s legal front, he added.
Brig. General Reuben Basiao, commander of the Army’s 701st Infantry Brigade based in Compostela Valley, said GF 25’s dismantling was “another proof that the NPA continues to lose tactically.”
With this development, Basiao called on the NPA members and supporters to surrender.
“You are at the losing end, fight the government and you will surely perish. Surrender now while peaceful ends are being offered to you,” Basiao said. Lilian C Mellejor/PNA-northboundasia.com