AFP gains ground VS insurgency in Central Mindanao

CAMP SIONGCO, Datu Odin Sinsuat, Maguindanao: The Joint Task Force Central continues gaining ground in the campaign against terrorism and insurgency particularly the communist terrorist group (CTG) in Central Mindanao.

SURRENDERED COMMUNISTS: Two members of the communist terrorist group (CTG) a.k.a. Ran and Kulam handed over their revolver and 12-gauge shotgun as they surrendered to the 37th Infantry Battalion in Lebak, Sultan Kudarat province. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

Major Andrew Linao, spokesman of the Western Mindanao Command (WestMinCom) on Monday said the military troops recovered firearms in an arms cache disclosed by a former rebel after he surrendered in South Cotabato earlier this month.

According to WestMinCom Commander Lt. Gen. Alfredo Rosario, Jr., troops of the 5th Special Forces Battalion acted on the information from a former member of the communist terrorist group and proceeded to the location of an arms cache at Purok Tabuto, Sitio Lambed, Barangay Laconon, T’Boli, South Cotabato on Saturday, February 5.

Operating troops recovered one cal. 5.56 M16A1 rifle and one improvised M79 Grenade Launcher. Recovered firearms were deposited at 5SF Battalion headquarters for safekeeping.

Meanwhile, two members of the communist terrorist group surrendered anew in Central Mindanao on Saturday afternoon. According to Maj. Gen. Juvymax Uy, commander of Joint Task Force Central, the surrendered personalities are former members of the Dragon Fruit Platoon, East Daguma Front, Sub-Regional Committee Daguma, Far South Mindanao Region.

Major Linao said both a.k.a. Ran and a.k.a. Kulam handed over one 12-gauge Shotgun and one cal. 38 revolver to Lt. Col. Allen Van Estrera, commanding officer of the 37th Infantry Battalion in Barangay Tibpuan, Lebak, Sultan Kudarat.

He said the surrendered firearms were deposited at 37IB headquarters for safekeeping while the surrendered personalities are currently undergoing custodial debriefing.

“This is a positive development in our campaign to end the local communist armed conflict in Central Mindanao. Rest assured that we will be strengthening our efforts to engage communities and encourage rebels to surrender while military actions are sustained in the area,” Lt. Gen. Rosario said.

JULMUNIR I. JANNARAL

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