‘High-ranking’ lady rebel killed in NPA-army clash

AN ALLEGED political officer of New People’s Army was killed in an encounter with government troops at Sitio Tinungkaan, Barangay Datu Danwata in  Malita, Davao Occidental early morning Wednesday.

Soldiers were able also to recover a M653 Baby Armalite at the clash site.

Col. Ronnie Villanueva, commander of 1002nd Infantry Brigade, identified the slain rebel as Alias Gretchen, also a medic of Guerilla Front 71 in Far South Mindanao Region.

The armed encounter occurred when soldiers chanced upon around 20 rebels, led by Kumander Joey.

The firefight ensued for about an hour before the rebels scampered to different directions. There was no reported casualty among the soldiers .

The soldiers of 73IB are now conducting pursuit operations against the fleeing NPAs.

Lt Col. Ronnie Babac, commander of 73rd Infantry Battalion, said that the encounter was  part  of the continuing efforts to force out the remnants of the NPAs operating in the boundaries of Davao Occidental and Sarangani.

On Oct. 1, 2014, three NPAs were killed and two captured in Brgy Kinangan, Malita following a clash with troops. They also recovered 12 high-powered firearms and three IEDs.

On Feb. 16, 2015, seven NPAs were killed and nine high-powered firearms and three IEDs were recovered in Barangay Datal Anggas, Sarangani.

In his statement, Maj. Gen Rafael Valencia, commander of 10th Infantry Division, lauded the bravery of the soldiers while he expressed his grief on the death of the female rebel.

“We extend our condolences to the bereaved family of the fallen amazon,” Gen Valencia said. “It is now the  time for the CPP-NPA to realize the futility of the armed struggle.”

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