The Philippine Army deployed more soldiers in Negros Island for combat and civil-military operations, in implementation of Executive Order 70 issued by President Rodrigo Duterte.
EO 70 seeks to institute a "whole of government" approach in addressing the communist insurgency, and the creation of a Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict in every provinces.
The 33rd Division Reconnaissance Company, that is capable of conducting long range combat and reconnaissance operations to hunt armed New People’s Army rebels, arrived yesterday on board Navy ship BRP Tausug, while the 14th Civil Military Operations Battalion, composed of more than 100 CMO personnel, arrived days earlier at the BREDCO Port in Bacolod City.
Soldiers of the 33rd DRC came from Panay island, while the 14th CMOB was redeployed from Luzon to Negros.
The 33rd DRC troopers are well trained in conducting combat operations, similar to the elite units of the Philippine Army, including the Scout Rangers and Special Forces, Col. InocencioPasaporte, 303rd Infantry Brigade commander, said.
Pasaporte said that the arrival of 33rd DRC will help them in the conduct of focused military operations against the remaining NPA rebels in Negros, while the 14th CMOB is expected boost in the implementation of their Retooled Community Support Programs (RCSP) in conflict-affected areas.
Negros island is a priority area for clearing of armed local insurgents and dismantling of the existing four NPA guerilla fronts by the Army’s 3rd Infantry Division.
Pasaporte said the deployment of 14th CMO troopers will further elevate the capability of the 303rd Infantry Brigade to support the different RCSP teams and strengthen their partnership with local government units and other government agencies.
Earlier, he revealed that the CPP-NPA in Negros is bent on destroying the RCSP program, which is an effective tool of the government for ending the local armed conflict.
“With the support of local government units, other agencies and communities, we will achieve a peaceful province, free from the influence of the NPA,” Pasaporte said.*
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