THE NPA-CENTRAL ISABELA (Reynaldo Piñon Command or RPC) struck at the 95th IB, a newly formed battalion under the 5th ID, in a series of tactical offensives.
About 12 troopers were slain while three others were injured in an ambush launched by Red fighters against a platoon of the 95th IB in Barangay Sindon Bayabo, Ilagan City on August 16, at around 5 a.m. Among those killed in action was Sgt. Junie Iyadan. Red fighters seized an R4 assault rifle and 10 magazines in the ambush. The AFP retaliated by dropping bombs and strafing using two helicopters which severely terrorized civilians and destroyed their livelihood. Two carabaos were killed.
On August 14, around 9 p.m., Red fighters disarmed Task Force Kalikasan (TFK) members along Sindon Highway in the same barangay. The TFK is notorious for controlling logging operations in, and exploiting resources of the Sierra Madre mountain range. Its personnel confiscate timber which they then sell to generate income. They also nab small loggers and extort cash from them ranging from P2,000-P10,000 per trip.
The NPA-Central Isabela also arrested PO2 Danilo Maur who was caught red-handed transporting 3,000 boardfeet of timber along the same highway on August 15 at around 11 p.m. Maur is an active intelligence agent. He uses logging and trading as a pretext for conducting surveillance in territories of the people’s government. He is also notorious for extorting money from small loggers. A .45 caliber pistol was seized from him.
Maur was declared a prisoner of war and probed for his crimes against the people. He was set free after a three-day investigation. He voluntarily promised to stop his surveillance and criminal activities. He was turned over to his family on August 19 at around 2 p.m.
Meanwhile, armed actions were also mounted by other NPA units in various parts of the country.
Ilocos Sur. The NPA-Ilocos Sur (Alfredo Cesar Jr Command or ACC) attacked the 81st IB headquarters in Barangay Bugbuga, Sta. Cruz in the evening of August 9. Saniata Maglaya, spokesperson of ACC, said that an AFP official was killed while another soldier was wounded in the attack.
Maglaya added that the 81st IB is notorious for abusing civilians while conducting so-called community support programs. They also serve as mercenaries of hydropower dam projects in Salcedo. The 81st IB spokesperson admitted that on top of the casualties, the officers’ quarters, administrative office, and a vehicle were also destroyed.
Masbate. On August 24 at around 7:45 a.m., Red fighters of the NPA-Masbate (Jose Rapsing Command) ambushed policemen aboard a patrol vehicle in Crossing Biyong, Masbate City. The said officers came from their detachment in Barangay Bayombon when the NPA detonated an explosive (CDX) and fired upon them. Four policemen were wounded, including SP02 Ariel Espiel.
Rizal. Two elements of the 80th IB were seriously wounded when the NPA-Rizal blasted their truck with a CDX in Sitio Tanza 2, San Jose, Antipolo City on July 30, at around 9:30 a.m.
On July 28, another unit of the NPA-Rizal shot at elements of the 59th IB operating in Barangay Sta. Inez, Tanay, Rizal. A soldier was slain.
Quezon. A unit of the NPA-Quezon in Southern Tagalog fired at a company of the 80th IB in Sitio Sari, Lumutan on August 13, General Nakar. Two soldiers were slain while two others were seriously wounded.
On the afternoon of the same day, an element of the 1st IB was sniped and killed by another unit of the NPA-Quezon in Barangay Cagsiay II, Mauban. Elements of the said unit serve as mercenaries of Marcbuilt Construction, a company notorious for grabbing farmers’ lands in Laguna and Quezon.
Capiz. Four soldiers of the 61st IB were wounded in a harassment operation launched by a unit of the NPA-Central Panay (Jose Percival Estocada Jr Command) on August 26 in Sitio Naatip, Barangay Lahug. The 17-men unit of the said batallion were conducting combat operations when they were hit by a CDX at around 7:00 p.m.
Iloilo. Three police officers were wounded in an ambush launched by a unit of the NPA-Southern Front (Napoleon Tumagtang Command) against the Iloilo Police Provincial Office’s 1st Provincial Mobile Force Company on August 24 at around 6 a.m.
The said officers were on a combat patrol in Barangay Isian, Victoria, Leon.Chief Inspector Abner Jordan, the leader of the said unit, was wounded in action.
Compostela Valley. A unit of the NPA-Compostela Valley ambushed patrolling troops of the 46th IB in Manangkol, Golden Valley, Mabini. Three soldiers were killed in the attack.