Thursday, May 26, 2022

EastMinCom’s focused military operations on Communist Terrorist Group induces waves of surrender, recovery of firearms

NSFA, Panacan, Davao City - Troops of the Eastern Mindanao Command, under the supervision of LtGen. Greg T. Almerol continues to seize and recover various firearms from the Communist Terrorist Group (CTG) as a surge of surrenders of its members due to intensified military operations led to the discovery of arms caches and war materiel over the past weeks.

The largest of these was the recovery of six high-powered firearms composed of two M16A1 rifles, two M4 Carbines rifles, an M653 rifle, an M14 rifle, four M16 magazines, and four bandoliers after a CTG leader who yielded to the troops of 1002nd Brigade's 72nd Infantry Battalion (IB) pointed the location of an arms cache at Brgy. Sinaysayan, Kitaotao, Bukidnon on May 20.

Troops identified the CTG personality as Mayunie Man-inday Sayad, Supply Officer/Squad Leader of Front Guerilla Unit (FGU), Guerilla Front (GF) 57, Sub-Regional Committee (SRC) 3, Southern Mindanao Regional Committee (SMRC).

He also bared that Sayad's peaceful surrender was aided by Punong Barangay Thelma Hilaria, the Head of the Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (TF-ELCAC) of Brgy. New Kabalantian in Arakan, North Cotabato.

Troops of 16IB under 402nd Brigade likewise seized an M16A1 rifle, an improvised grenade launcher, an Uzi, and two magazines with ammunition as a high-ranking CTG member who surrendered this month following her wife, divulged the location of the said firearms on May 22.

Alias Jayto, the Commander of Sub-Regional Sentro De Grabidad (SRSDG) Eagles, Sub-Regional Committee (SRC) 1, North Central Mindanao Regional Committee (NCMRC), disclosed during an initial interview that he safe kept the said firearms in his relative at Sitio Larapan, Brgy Kiabo, Malitbog, Bukidnon.

The same unit had likewise secured an AK47 rifle with magazine and ammunition after two CTG members identified as alias Mulan and alias Justin abandoned their group due to hardship and fatigue from continuing encounters with the government troops. Said personalities hold positions as Team Leader and Medic of Headquarters Force (HQF) NEO, NCRMC on May 24.

On the following day, combined forces from the 66IB under the 701st Brigade and Davao De Oro Provincial Police Office discovered an arms cache composed of three AK47 rifles, an M16 rifle, an M203 Grenade Launcher, and two magazines through the revelation of alias Wen-wen, a former member of Regional Operational Command - Regional Headquarters (ROC-RHQ), SMRC at Sitio Libuton, Brgy. Andap, New Bataan, Davao de Oro on May 25.

Before this, troops of the 403rd Brigade's 8IB also retrieved two AK47 rifles after two members of the RSDG Compaq, NCMRC, who surrendered last April, revealed the location of an arms cache at Brgy. Busdi, Malaybalay City, Bukidnon on May 21.

The two personalities identified as Butchoy Solinay, Vice Commanding Officer, and Jamaica Kaykay Singatao, a Supply Officer, said they were also former members of the defunct Guerilla Front (GF) 89.

Meanwhile, LtGen. Almerol reported that since January this year, 452 CTG members were already neutralized by EastMinCom, with 35 killed, 26 captured/arrested, 194 capitulated, and 197 withdrew their support to the terrorist movement.

He also highlighted that 342 high-powered firearms were gained by the Command, with 106 obtained through surrenders and 236 through combat operations for the same period.

"The series of setbacks of the CTG, such as the surrenders and recovery of firearms, is due to the focused military operations conducted by EastMinCom troops that prompted their units with dwindling members to hide excess guns and their members to escape," the EastMinCom Commander said.

With the neutralization of CTG members and clearing of their formerly influenced areas, he likewise noted that six CTG Guerilla Fronts and two Sub-Regional Guerilla Units (SRGUs) were dismantled by EastMinCom this year.

These are composed of the GF Huawei, GF68B, GF89, GF Malayag, and SRSDG Wei of the NCMRC; GF3 and SRGU, SRC5 of the SMRC; and GF Alip of the Far South Mindanao Region (FSMR).

LtGen. Almerol attributed the accomplishment of EastMinCom to the collaborative efforts and cooperation of local leaders and former rebels that resulted in the recovery of various firearms and the snowball of surrenders for the said period.

He also lauded the troops for their tireless work and dedication to ending the local communist armed conflict before President Rodrigo Roa Duterte culminates his term.

"We commend the strong synergy of government security forces, the TF-ELCAC, and former rebels, which ushered the reduction of CTG forces and firepower. It exhibits that our whole-of-nation approach, through Executive Order 70, continues to reap fruits evident by our triumphs," he expressed.

"Rest assured that our efforts to curb the remnants of the CTG, coupled with the developments efforts of the Local Government Units, will continue to encourage more terrorist personalities to surrender, especially now that they are at the brink of total collapse," the EastMinCom Commander added.

He also reiterated his call to remaining CTG members to yield and avail the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program (E-CLIP) "to live peacefully and reunite with their families before its too late."###

Source: Public Information Office, Eastern Mindanao Command, AFP

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