BACOLOD CITY, Negros Occidental, Philippines – The Army 303rd Infantry Brigade’s sustained combat offensives against remnants of what officers previously described as “severely weakened” fronts of the New People’s Army in Negros island has dragged on to more than a week now and has resulted to the death of four alleged rebels so far, one the island’s top Communist, Rogelio Posadas alias Ka Putin.
The latest Army kill, the fourth so far in a week of fighting, was reported by the 62nd Infantry Battalion yesterday, 28 April 2023, in the mountain city of Canlaon in Negros Oriental.
Army Third Division commander, Major General Mation Sison, praised the 62nd IB soldiers in a message from Jamindan, Capiz where the division is based, for acting primptly on the tip-off from civilians.
“The outcome of the recent encounters is a clear indicator that the CTG (Communist Terrorist Group) can no longer mislead the people of Negros. The NPAs are menace to the society, and are deemed to be destroyed,” Sison was quoted as sayimg in a dispatch sent by acting Division Public Affairs chief, Lieutenant Colonel Vicel Jan C Garsuta.
The 62nd said in a dispatch from civil military officer, Second Lieutenant Mary Liza Joy De Guzman, that Anthony Curson, who goes by the nom de guerre “Miguel” was found dead at the encounter site in Malatanglad, an upland community in Budlasan village.
Another rebel, Leonido Montero, whose known aliases are “Lanie” or “Dindo,” was captured by soldiers who also seized two pistols with magazines and bullets.
De Guzman added Montero has an arrest warrant for murder issued by a regional trial court in Guihulngan City.
The Canlaon clash was a result of information received by the soldiers from the community, prompting the 62nd to deploy a rifle unit that clashed with an estimsted five-man guerrilla unit.
The Canlaon clash yesterday involving the 62nd bookended the more than a week of fighting involving three maneuver battalions of the 303rd IB that was sparled by the clash on 20 April 2023 in the town of Moises Padilla town.
The 62nd, tasked to confront the rebels’ Central Negros Front 1, killed ranking rebel Jose Albores Jr, codenamed “Jojo” in the underground, reportedly a member of the rebels’ tribunal or “People’s Court” that the military derisively calls as a “kangaroo court.”
Jojo’s body was found by soldiers in the mountain village of Quintin Remo in Moises Padilla after a clash that lasted briefly starting around 5:30am.
On the same day, troopers of the 79th Infantry Battalion also clashed with rebels in the upland village of Libertad in Escalante City.
The 79th, assigned to confront the Northern Negros Front, classified by the military as “dismantled,” reported one rebel killed and two of its troopers wounded.
Also on the same day, but reported by the Army the next day, 21 April 2023, troopers of the 62nd and the 94th Infantry Battalions, assigned against the Central Negros Front 2, also clashed with a guerrilla unit that led to the death of Posadas who was found dead in the morning of 20 April 2023 in the mountain sitio of Cabite in Santol village, Binalbagan town.