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Bohol Once a Hotbed of Communism
« on: November 16, 2017, 06:03:06 PM »
By Mike Frialde, Philippine Star, March 24, 2000

The Philippine National Police (PNP) is beefing up its intelligence gathering
in Central Visayas following Thursday's ambush by the New People's Army (NPA)
on an Army unit in Sagbayan, Bohol, killing seven soldiers and five
militiamen.

PNP chief Deputy Director General Panfilo Lacson said he has ordered police
units in the Central Visayas "to remain vigilant," adding, "There is a
possibility that the rebels will be attacking police stations next."

Lacson admitted that the Central Visayas police, headed by Chief Superintendent
Tiburcio Fusillero, his classmate in the Philippine Military Academy, received
no prior intelligence information about the Bohol ambush.

"Bohol has always been a hotbed of communist rebel activities. They used to
attack detachments of the military's regional mobile group. Now they are
targeting police detachments," he said.

Last year, the NPA raided a police detachment in Batuan, Bohol and carted away
high-powered firearms.

Headlines ( Article MRec ), pagematch: 1, sectionmatch: 1

Police and military forces are bracing for more rebel attacks as the NPA marks
its anniversary on March 26.

The NPA ambushed in Barangay Sta. Catalina, Sagba-yan, Bohol government
reinforcements trying to intercept rebels who attacked an Army detachment in
nearby Balilihan six hours earlier.

Among the dead was Army 2nd Lt. Socrates Kue, team leader of a unit of the 7th
Special Forces Company that was trying to intercept the fleeing Balilihan
attackers.

Two other Army troopers, Sgt. Ricky Pacullo and Cpl. Sixto Roncale, and a
militiaman, Allan Avila, were wounded and taken to the Governor Vicente
Gallares Memorial Hospital in Tagbi-laran, 76 kilometers away.

Pacullo said his unit was aboard an Army truck when about 40 rebels opened fire
on them from both sides of the road.

Maj. Michael Manquiquis, public information officer of the Armed Forces'
Visayas Command (Viscom), said only 10 bodies have been recovered in
Sagbayan.

Manquiquis said the ambushers were not the same rebel group that attempted to
overrun the detachment in Balilihan.

Diversionary tactic

Gen. Santos Gabison, Viscom commander, said the attack in Balilihan was just a
diversionary tactic and that the rebels' real intention was to ambush the
reinforcing troops.

Another rebel group was also sighted in nearby Catigbian, apparently also
positioned for an ambush in case the Army reinforcements pass through
Sagbayan.

There are suspicions the rebel group was led by Domingo Compoc, a leader of
Front 1 of the NPA's Central Visayas Regional Party Committee.

Communist rebels were also being blamed for attacks on the Department of
Energy's head offices in Makati City and on two petroleum depots in Negros
Oriental.

The attacks on the depots of Pilipinas Shell and Petron in Barangay Tampi,
Amlan, Negros Oriental were carried out within six hours of each other.

Seven men aboard a jeep fired two rifle-launched grenades and sprayed about 100
rounds of ammunition at the Shell and Petron depots in Amlan at 9:45 p.m. last
Wednesday.

Negros Oriental police director Voltaire Calzado said the rebels did not
attempt to enter the depots and the attack, despite its intensity, caused only
minor damage.

He said the police have not identified any suspects, but Negros is a stronghold
of the Revolutionary Proletarian Army-Alex Boncayao Brigade (RPA-ABB), a
breakaway faction of the pro-Sison communist group.

Last month, the RPA-ABB threatened to target oil depots if another oil price
increase was imposed.

Checkpoints were immediately established in the Negros Oriental towns of San
Jose, Sibulan and Pamplona.- With Freeman News Service

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