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Alleged NPA rebels strafe new police substation in Tagum
« on: March 29, 2008, 08:00:46 AM »
TAGUM CITY, Philippines -- Suspected New People's Army (NPA) rebels have attacked a new police substation in a village here, which police said was a "cheap attempt" to show force a day ahead of the group's 40th anniversary.

No one was hurt when a still undetermined number of communist guerillas fired at the P1-million Barangay (village) Magdum police outpost at around 9 p.m. Thursday although the building sustained slight damage, Senior Superintendent Benilito Bianzon, Davao del Norte police chief, said on Friday.

Bianzon said police and civilian volunteers manning the post retaliated but was uncertain whether they were able to inflict casualties against the attackers who used M14 rifles.

"It was an apparent diversionary tactic. The assailants were possibly on their way for their anniversary celebration somewhere and to draw away the attention of our policemen manning a [much reinforced] detachment near the area, the rebels hit at the substation," Bianzon said, adding the harassment could be "a last minute shot at an accomplishment to be boasted about" in the guerillas' anniversary.

Superintendent Dario Gunabe, Tagum city police chief, said the concrete wall behind the building bore bullet holes and glass windows were shattered.

"But [there's] no injury," Gunabe said, adding security has been beefed up in the outpost to thwart similar attacks in the future.

Bianzon said he had talked to Mayor Rey Uy and to village officials immediately after the incident and had drawn up plans to strengthen security in the area.

Four policemen and eight CVO members were detailed in the outpost during the incident.

The Magdum police substation is among the four police outposts inaugurated by the city government on Wednesday in an effort to beef up police presence in remote villages.

Other substations are located in the villages of Apokon, Canocotan, and La Filipina.

By Frinston Lim
Philippine Daily Inquirer

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