KIDAPAWAN CITY (MindaNews/06 June) – Suspected communist guerrillas harassed a paramilitary detachment under the 72nd Infantry Battalion in Makilala town in North Cotabato around 8:30 p.m., Monday, an Army official said.
Lt. Col. Harold Argamosa, commander of the 39th Infantry Battalion, said the attack was the fifth since Mindanao was placed under a state of martial law and took place a day before President Duterte’ scheduled visit in the province.
Argamosa said the rebel attack in Barangay Kisante, Makilala lasted only five minutes.
“We did not reply to it. Our troops decided to stay put and did not retaliate. They knew it was just pure harassment,” said the Army colonel.
Makilala falls under the area of responsibility of the 39th IB but the 72nd IB built a detachment of the Civilian Armed Force Geographical Unit (Cafgu) in Kisante.
Argamosa identified the attackers as members of the New Peoples’ Army (NPA) Front 51 which operates in Makilala and in the towns of Bansalan and Sta. Cruz in Davao del Sur.
The attack by the NPA in Kisante was the fifth since May 22.
On May 26, two roadside bombings by suspected communist rebels took place in Kidapawan City wounding four policemen.
On May 29, alleged rebels attacked two members of a K9 unit, and on May 31, a Cafgu detachment.
Duterte was expected to arrive at the headquarters of the Army’s 602nd Brigade in Carmen, North Cotabato for his regular troop visitation, around 2 p.m. Tuesday.
The families and relatives of soldiers killed in the siege in Marawi City would be given an opportunity to talk to the President.
At least five of the government casualties in Marawi came from North Cotabato – two from Kabacan, and one each from Pikit, Aleosan, and Libungan towns. (Malu Cadelina-Manar/MindaNews)