Troops from the 401st Infantry (Unity) Brigade captured what was believed to be the regional headquarters of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP)-New People’s Army (NPA) Northeastern Mindanao Regional Command (NEMRC), according to the military.
In an interview with The Manila Bulletin yesterday, Capt. Rodulfo S. Cordero, Civil Military Operations (CMO) officer and spokesperson of the 401st Brigade, confirmed that the brigade overran the 1,000-square meter camp located in the mountainous and forested Anday Valley Complex in San Agustin, Surigao del Sur.
He said the capture of the regional headquarters of the NEMRC was the offshoot of the massive and wide pursuit operations of troops after they encountered NPA terrorists last November 28, 2017.
“Some sporadic gunbattle also took place where two NPA terrorists were killed until our pursuing troops captured the NEMRC encampment,” claimed the 401st Brigade spokesperson and CMO officer.
“The seized camp is complete with barricade, water system and several listening posts strategically located on the high ground in the forested mountain,” he said.
Cordero added the NPA camp can accommodate up to 200 persons, and is equipped with an electric generator, has makeshift houses, tents, water source and communication facilities, including cellular phone signal boosters used for their communications.
During the clearing operations yesterday, troops seized several Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs), M203 and M79 grenade launchers, assemblies for M14 and M16 rifles, several live 60mm mortars, rifle grenades, volt and spring of M60 machine gun, eight hand held radios, anti-government documents and the CPP and NPA flags, Cordero said.
Col. Andres C. Centino, commanding officer of the “Fighting and Unity” 401st Brigade, said that based on reports and recovered documents, the communist terrorists belonging to the NEMRC planned to use the IEDs recovered by the operating troops to attack the Villeneuve troops, business establishments and civilian targets to highlight the CPP anniversary on December 26 this year.