By Ben Serrano
Forty- three New People’s Army (NPA) members have either been killed or arrested by government forces since the Duterte administration declared martial law in Mindanao, the Armed Forces of the Philippines said.
“We have achieved so far in reducing the capabilities of the NPA particularly after declaration of Martial Law in Mindanao last May 23, 2017 by President Duterte,” Col. Andres Centino, commander of the Army’s 401st Infantry Brigade said.
Centino said that since May, 43 NPA rebels had either been killed or arrested, while 43 had voluntarily surrendered. A total of 92 firearms were recovered from the NPA rebels.
He called on communist rebels to lay down their arms or be killed. The NPA is the armed of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP).
In November alone, the military dealt a significant blow to the NPA by capturing the regional headquarters of the Northeastern Mindanao Regional Command (NEMRC) and killing two ranking rebel leaders.
The more than 5,000 personnel of the 401st IB covers operational areas of Agusan del Sur and Surigao del Sur provinces where reportedly majority of the armed NPAs were operating.