The New People’s Army in Eastern Visayas (Efren Martires Command or EMC) today reports that an NPA unit was raided by troops under the 87th Infantry Battalion last July 29 near Sitio Salvacion, Barangay San Nicolas, San Jose de Buan, Western Samar.
The said NPA unit was able to retaliate with gunfire. The firefight lasted for 30 minutes before Red fighters retreated to safety, with only one suffering slight injuries. Enemy troops confiscated three M-16 rifles, two KG rifles, and electronic gadgets, among others.
The enemy’s strike operation is part of the massive combat operations by up to seven combat units of the 8th Infantry Division in San Jose de Buan and nearby towns of Matuguinao, San Jorge, Motiong, Paranas, and Can-avid in Eastern Samar, which began since the last week of May. Fascist AFP troops have been encamped inside dozens of barrios including Sitio Salvacion to conduct combat-intelligence-psychological warfare operations against the masses. They have illegally arrested peasants, harassed and forced residents to surrender as members of the NPA, and let their speakers blare with anti-communist propaganda. In less than a month, they fired at least 88 bullets of mortar towards the local peasants’ farmlands without hitting a single Red fighter and risking injuring individuals and damaging civilian property.
The 8th ID was also enlisted to conduct clearing operations for a large-scale mining project for bauxite by companies under Marcventures Holdings Incorporated. Dozens of barrios within the militarized towns are part of this project. The large scale miners enlisted the military’s help because they know that the residents can launch a mass campaign to prevent the project from causing irreversible ecological destruction and displacement of their livelihood.
In this light, the EMC vehemently denies the allegation of the AFP that the NPA unit was “extorting money and food supply” at the time of the raid. This malicious and oft-recycled lie is an attempt to try and cover up their intensified military operations and human rights violations in the area. Commanders Lt. Col. Reynaldo Balido Jr. of the 87th IB and Maj. Gen. Pio Diñoso III of the 8th ID must be denounced for this regurgitation and for twisting and exaggerating the details of the military action.
This latest defensive will not deter the NPA in Western Samar and elsewhere in Eastern Visayas from continuing to defend the people from the fascist attacks of the AFP and from upholding the policy of the revolutionary movement against large-scale and destructive mining.#