Suspected Communist rebels stepped up their attack against government security forces as they conducted two separate ambushes in Oriental Mindoro and Albay that led to the wounding of five policemen.
In Oriental Mindoro, three policemen were wounded and their service police vehicle was also burned by the rebels, according to Brig. Gen. Pascual Muñoz J., director of the MIMAROPA (Mindoro Oriental and Occidental, Marinduque, Romblon, Palawan) regional police.
“We strongly condemn the ambush of our men. I have already ordered the conduct of aggressive pursuit operations against those responsible,” said Muñoz.
The policemen, assigned to the 403rd B Mobile Company, were on their way back to their camp at around 11:30 a.m. on Monday when armed men started shooting at their vehicle while it was traversing Mabaho Road in Barangay Cabalwa, Mansalay town.
The policemen were on their way back to their camp after conducting mobile patrol.
As a result, three policemen were wounded. They were identified as Corporals Vincent Dominguez, Corporal Michael Librea and Patrolman Norman Alvaro. They were taken to a hospital in Roxas town.
An hour earlier in Albay, Staff Sgts. Roger Dajac and Melchor Buban were wounded when they were ambushed by suspected Communist rebels in Barangay Cawayan in Manito town.
Capt. Dexter Panganiban, spokesman of the Albay Provincial Police Office, said the two policemen were on their way to a Quarantine Control Point for duty when they were waylaid.
The New People’s Army (NPA) has been waging more than five decades of armed struggle against the government, the longest-running insurgency in the world.
Attempts by President Duterte and past presidents to strike a peace deal with the Communist rebels, through the National Democratic Front of the Philippines, have failed.