Six more communist rebels were reported killed on Thursday, bringing to 12 the number of insurgents slain in encounters with Army troopers in Northern Samar and Sultan Kudarat provinces.
The six fatalities were believed members of the East Daguma Front of the South Mindanao Region under Dennis Dulonan, executive committee member and deputy secretary of the group.
It was not clear if Dulonan was killed in the clash.
Records showed that Dulonan has a standing warrant of arrest for arson and frustrated murder.
Army Maj. Gen. Roy Galido, commander of Task Force Central, said the killing of the six insurgents was the result of the series of encounters at Sitios Sandigan and Mudti in Bgumbayan town.
Galido said the rebels were pinned down by elements of the 7th Infantry Battalion commanded by Lt. Col. Frederick Chicote of the 603rd Brigade.
“The recent encounter exemplifies that the communist terrorist group capabilities are significantly degraded,” Galido said.
Recovered from the scene of the encounter were a Russian made AK47 rifle, three M16 rifles, magazines, and personal belongings of the insurgents.
“Rest assured that we will sustain our current campaign and strenghten our partnership with all stakeholders to destroy the remaining threat groups who refuse to return to the folds of the law,” said Western Command acting chief, Marine Brig. Gen. Arturo Rojas.
Last Wednesday, six rebels from the Eastern Visayas Regional Party Committee under Helenita Pardales were also slain in a clash in Barangay Imelda in Las Navas town, Northern Samar.
The series of military victories against the insurgents prompted AFP chief of staff Gen. Bartolome Bacarro to personally congratulate the troops of the 803rd Infantry Brigade that figured in the military operations.
Bacarro assured the troops of his continued support as the AFP ramps up its efforts to finally end the communist armed conflict in the country.