The New People’s Army’s (NPA) deception in Palawan is “coming to an end” as a result of community-wide efforts to achieve peace and the Provincial Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict’s (PTF ELCAC) assistance to terminate the armed struggle in some municipalities.
Captain Ellaine Collado, spokesperson of the 3MBde, said the support of the community to the intensified focus military operations (FMOs) performed by the Marine Battalion Landing Team-3 (MBLT-3) led again to the recovery of high-powered firearms and ammunitions on September 3 and 4 in the province’s rural areas.
On September 3, the troops found two M16 rifles, one long magazine, eight small magazines, one war belt, and 80 rounds of 5.56 mm ammunition. A motor banca was also recovered, which was allegedly used to transport the insurgents’ remaining members.
The following day, September 4, she said they also recovered an M16 rifle, an Elisco “Baby Armalite” M177 rifle, a long magazine, a short magazine, and 34 rounds of 5.56mm ammunition.
Collado said high-powered firearms and ammunitions were located due to a tip off from a concerned citizen. She, however, did not name the areas where they were found to protect residents against any possibility of reprisal.
“These successive recoveries of CTG paraphernalia without firing a single shot only proves that the communists’ deception in the province is coming to an end with the coordinated efforts of the community and the support of the PTF ELCAC,” she said.
The accomplishments also mark the 1st anniversary of the “neutralization” of three ranking rebel leaders in an encounter with government troops in Barangay Mainit, Brooke’s Point last year, she said.
She said that with the continuous conduct of the Community Support Program (CSP) in barangays that are reported NPA lairs, followed by their declaration against the rebels as persona non-grata and denouncing all their activities, the government is gaining ground in the pursuit to bring the local communist armed conflict to an end.
The 3MBde is urging the remaining armed rebels in Palawan to give up their fight by surrendering to the police and taking advantage of government initiatives for rebel returns, including the chance to spend Christmas with their families.