Government forces foil NPA attack in Bukidnon

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CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY — Law enforcers and military forces foiled an attack, which was carried out by a group of armed individuals believed to be communist fighters, in a Bukidnon town Tuesday evening, police said Wednesday.

Col. Surki Sereñas, Police Regional Office-10 (PRO-10) spokesperson, said the Manolo Fortich municipal police station was tipped off by a concerned citizen that the New People’s Army (NPA) was about to stage an offensive in Sitio Aurora, Barangay Santo Niño.

“The information was received at around 11 o’clock in the evening and the joint PNP and Armed Forces of the Philippines troops immediately responded,” Sereñas said.

A few minutes later, a firefight ensued when the NPA harassed local Citizen Armed Force Geographical Unit (Cafgu) detachment in the area, Sereñas said, quoting a report by Manolo Fortich municipal police chief Lt. Col. Duphar Chris Cuaresma.

No one was hurt in the encounter involving a hundred NPA attackers who stormed the Cafgu detachment, Sereñas said.

He said the NPA managed to burn several vehicles, including an Isuzu Elf truck and a Toyota Hilux pickup before fleeing the scene.

“If the vehicles are owned by the farmers, it’s possible that they are also the target of the attack,” Sereñas said, adding the municipal police are still investigating and are tracing the registration records of the burned vehicles.

Sereñas said the heavily armed NPA members are planning to harass private farms and vulnerable government installations in the area in connection with their extortion activity.

“It’s a scare and extort tactic,” he said, adding that responding police officers and soldiers declared the area as cleared a few hours after the attack occurred. -PNA

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