NPA arms cache seized

RECOVERED FIREARMS. The Army’s 75th Infantry Battalion has reported the recovery of two AK-47 rifles, magazines, and ammunition during an operation in Sitio Andap, Barangay Mahaba, Marihatag, Surigao del Sur on Jan. 18, 2023. The firearms recovery was made possible through revelations made by former communist New People’s Army rebels and the support of residents. (Photo courtesy of 75IB)

BUTUAN CITY — The Philippine Army’s 75th Infantry Battalion reported on Friday that state troops recovered high-powered firearms and ammunition stashed by communist New People’s Army rebels in the hinterlands of Marihatag, Surigao del Sur.

The 75IB said the soldiers found the location of two AK-47 rifles, five magazines, and 69 live ammunition in Sitio Andap, Barangay Mahaba, Marihatag, following a tip-off from former rebels who surrendered to the government earlier.

“Troops were dispatched to Sitio Andap for a focused military operation upon receiving information from former rebels about the location of the firearms and ammunition,” it said, adding that the retrieval of the rebels’ firearms was also made possible through the support of the residents in the area.

Lt. Col. Jelson Buyuccan, 75IB commander, acknowledged the former rebels for their support to the unit and dedication to helping the government achieve peace in Surigao del Sur.

“The Philippine Army will continue to serve the people and support the programs of the government to attain inclusive peace and sustainable development, especially in the former conflict-affected areas of Surigao del Sur,” Buyuccan assured.

He also urged the remaining NPA rebels in Surigao del Sur to lay down their arms and return to the fold of the law.

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