Another encounter between Philippine Army troops and suspected New People's Army rebels, the third in a week, took place Saturday, this time in Jimalalud, Negros Oriental.
Maj. Rey Tiongson, 3 rd Infantry Division spokesman, yesterday said Army soldiers were conducting community security patrol, when they were fired at by five armed men believed to be members of the NPA in Barangay Ili, Jimalalud town.
He said a firefight ensued and the rebels later withdrew in various directions, leaving behind traces of bloodstains.
Nobody was hit in the government side, while some rebels were believed to have been wounded, he added.
Col. Jon Aying, 303 rd Infantry Brigade commander, thanked the barangay residents for the valuable and timely information they relayed to him.
On July 14 and 18, a series of encounters took place in Brgy. Santol, Binalbagan, and Brgy. Buenavista, Himamaylan City, both of Negros Occidental, that claimed the lives of two Army soldiers and a rebel.
Aying said he has placed an Army medical team on standby in case injured NPA members seek medical assistance. Government troops were still conducting follow-up operations against the fleeing rebels, as of press time.
Major Gen. Aurelio Baladad, 3ID commanding general, reminded his troops to strictly follow the rule of law while conducting follow-on operations.*GPB
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