PNP says 1 killed, 2 hurt in NPA attack in Surigao del Sur

Eleazar orders intensified pursuit ops

(Eagle News) — Philippine National Police Chief Guillermo Eleazar has ordered police forces in Caraga region to intensify pursuit operations against members of the New People’s Army he said were responsible for the attack on a construction site in Surigao Del Sur that killed a worker and wounded two others.

Eleazar issued the statement after he said around 20 rebels allegedly members of the NPA North Eastern Mindanao Regional Committee-Guerrilla Front attacked the construction site of MR1 Construction in Purok 2, Barangay Zone 2, in Lanuza municipality on Thursday, after the company refused to give in to their extortion demands.

Caretaker Eldrin Daraman was killed while two other construction workers were injured.

The PNP said the rebels also torched two backhoes.

The group engaged responding elements of the Lanuza Municipal Police Station, the Surigao del Sur 2nd Provincial Mobile Force Company, and the 36th Infantry Battalion in a brief firefight before fleeing, according to the PNP.

“I strongly condemn this senseless attack perpetrated by CPP/NPA rebels. Wala talagang alam ang mga rebeldeng ito kung hindi ang magdulot ng gulo, karahasan at kamatayan sa ating mga komunidad (These people know nothing else but to sow chaos and death to our communities),” Eleazar said.

He noted that the attack on the construction site, in particular, was a violation of International Humanitarian Law and Republic Act 9851 or the Philippine Act on Crimes Against International Humanitarian Law, Genocide, and Other Crimes Against Humanity, which specifies as a violation intentionally directing attacks against the civilian population or against individual civilians not taking direct part in hostilities or attacks on civilian objects.

“Again these communist rebels attacked non-combatants and another innocent life was lost, Eldrin Daraman, because of their atrocity. May dalawa pang inosenteng sugatan sa pag-atake ng rebeldeng grupo (Two other innocent people were wounded in the attack of the rebel group),” Eleazar said, noting that this was “proof” the rebels were “lying” when they said they did not intentionally kill the Absalon cousins in Masbate City.

Eleazar was referring to Kieth Absalon, a rising star in Philippine football, and his cousin Nolven Absalon, who were on a bike ride when an improvised explosive device exploded in Barangay Anas early June.

A minor who was the Absalon’s relative was also wounded.

The NPA apologized for the “untimely and unnecessary deaths” of the cousins and the “injury to others resulting from errors in the military action” mounted by an NPA unit.

““Sa ginagawa ng mga rebeldeng komunista na pag-atake sa mga sibilyan, kasama na dito ang paggamit ng land mines, pinatutunayan nila na wala silang respeto sa International Humanitarian Law (What the Communist rebels show with what they’re doing is that they have no respect for international humanitarian law),” Eleazar said.