Army turns over bodies of slain NPA rebels
Government soldiers brought the dead bodies of two male communist rebels who died in an encounter last December 31 in Agusan del Sur, to their respective families in Bukidnon, over the weekend.
This after the army troops under the 8th Infantry Battalion (8IB) recovered the cadavers of the two New Peoples Army (NPA) casualties around 2:40 a.m., Saturday, 11 days after the gun battle sparked anew in Sitio Kinu-aw, Binicalan, San Luis, Agusan del Sur.
The military said the two were left behind by their comrades who scampered after the clash.
First Lieutenant Kenneth Cabbigat, civil military operations officer of the 8IB, said one of the fatalities was 19 years old from San Fernando, Bukidnon while the other one hails from Cabanglasan town.
“The mother blamed the CPP-NPA who recruited her son when he was just 16 years old. Ang inahan nagpatabang kang Gov. Jose Maria Zubiri busa atong gibalikan ang encounter site og na recover ilang mga lawas kay sobrang layo and delikado na pasukin kasi continuous ang military operations,” Cabbigat said.
“Kaning isa gahulatan pa nato ang family aron makaanhi sa morge sa Malaybalay aron mahatod na pud sa ilang balay sa Cabanglasan,” he added.
Cabbigat said the military is coordinating with the local government unit in the area to extend possible assistance to the families.
He said the army also sent a contingent to console and support the bereaved family by attending the wake and help arrange the proper burial of the two NPA fighters.
“We offer our sincere condolences to the families and relatives on the death of the two NPA terrorists. This could not have happened if they heeded our call of surrender,” 8IB commander officer Lieutenant Colonel Ronald Illana said.
“They were radicalized by the ill-ideologies of the NPA. I once again call upon the CPP-NPA terrorists not to violate the International Humanitarian Law (IHL) by recruiting minors as combatants, spare the innocent youth from joining your useless armed struggle,” he added.
“We are doing service even to our enemy in respect to IHL. He ceased to become an enemy at the time of surrender or death. So we take care of them even he is already dead, because we care also for his family,” 403rd Infantry Brigade commander Colonel Edgardo De Leon said.