Tuesday, April 27, 2021

Senior NPA leader, wife killed in Agusan clash (WARNING: Contains graphic images)

DAVAO CITY – A senior communist rebel leader and his wife were killed in a firefight with government troops in Agusan del Sur province in southern Philippines, officials announced Tuesday.

Officials said the fighting broke out in the village of Santa Maria in Trento town that killed Danny Huit, the committee secretary of the New People’s Army Guerrilla Front North. His wife, Naneth Catalino, also a member of the separatist rebel group, was slain while fighting alongside Huit.

Military photos released to the regional newspaper Mindanao Examiner show the bodies of rebel leader Danny Huit and wife, Naneth Catalino who are killed following a running gun battle in Agusan del Sur's Trento town on Monday, April 26, 2021.   

Col. Oliver Maquiling, commander of the 701st Infantry Brigade, said members of the 67th Infantry Battalion clashed with the couple after tracking them down in the village. Maguiling said a villager tipped off the soldiers about the presence of the rebels in the area. Huit and his wife tried to escape, but eventually were killed in the running gun battle, adding, no soldiers were injured or killed in the Monday clash.

He also lauded the relentless efforts of the troops in securing the communities against threats posed by rebels. A military dossier on Huit said he had a string of murder charges and was wanted in Davao Oriental and Davao de Oro provinces.

Maj. Gen. Greg Almerol, chief of the Eastern Mindanao Command, also praised the soldiers and the tipster for their vigilance. “The sustained coordination between the troops and the people is the key to our goal of building an insurgency-free and resilient community. Without their firm support, we cannot fully uproot the evils brought by the communist terrorist group,” he said.

He also urged rebels to surrender peacefully to the government and take advantage of the amnesty being offered by the Duterte administration. “We are calling the remaining members of the communist terrorist group to yield to the government peacefully instead of fighting for a cause that only sow terror and violence.”

“Choosing to die for a cause that has already claimed many innocent lives is not a noble act. The blood of the people you killed for your selfish political agenda will forever haunt you. History will only absolve you if you choose to surrender peacefully and help the country in building a peaceful and progressive Philippines,” Almerol said.

He also lauded the 10th Infantry Battalion headed by Maj. Gen. Ernesto Torres to which the brigade and battalion belong. For his part, Torres praised the soldiers for “standing by their mandate of protecting the people from lawless elements” and echoed Almerol’s call for rebels to surrender and avail the amnesty offer of the government.

Almerol and Torres were referring to the government’s amnesty program called E-Clip, a peace-building and social protection program that provides interventions and financial aid to those who surrender so they live peacefully with their family and become productive citizens of society.

The NPA has been waging a violent campaign for many decades now in an effort to put up a communist state in the country. (Mindanao Examiner)

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