At least 333 persons fled their homes in Lianga, Surigao del Sur as the military launched an air strike-backed operation against New People’s Army (NPA) rebels there.
The human rights group Karapatan said some 64 lumad families, or 333 individuals, were forced to flee their homes on Monday afternoon due to bomb run in two sitios in Barangay Diatagon.
Fearing full-blown military operation, the evacuees sought shelter in Sitio Simowao in the village of Diatagon, to avoid being caught in the crossfire, the group said.
Among those who fled the area were 96 students and 4 teachers from two community schools of the Tribal Filipino Program for Surigao del Sur (TRIFPSS), which a pro-government group of “lumad” alleged was being used by communist rebels to recruit fighters for the New People’s Army (NPA). By CLC Photo courtesy of Save Lumad Schools Caraga