An alleged New People’s Army (NPA) communist rebel died in an armed encounter in Sta. Catalina, Negros Oriental on Friday, July 1.
Maj. Gen. Benedict Arevalo, commander of the 3rd Infantry Division (3ID), identified the slain rebel as Cristanto Estrabela Lagradilla alias Locsin, of the South East Front (SEF), Komiteng Rehiyon-Negros, Cebu, Bohol, Siquijor (KR-NCBS) Squad 2.
A military report from the 3ID said elements of the 11th Infantry Battalion (!1IB) were conducting combat operations in Sitio Tamusi, Barangay Talalak when they encountered around five armed rebels.
A firefight erupted between the government forces and the enemies which lasted for eight minutes.
The enemies were forced to withdraw while the troops chased them. At the encounter site, they discovered the body of Lagradilla.
Arevalo said he ordered the troops to intensify their security operations after residents in Sta. Catalina reported the presence of NPA rebels in their community.
“With the cooperation of the communities and the collaborative efforts of other government agencies we are positive that we can sustain the peace and development in this part of the region,” Arevalo said.
The troops recovered from the slain rebel one KG9 rifle; various magazines with live ammunition, a bandolier, two hand-held radios, a backpack and personal documents.