Northern Mindanao, Philippines – In a significant development, five members of the New People's Army (NPA) surrendered to the military amidst intensified operations in the regions of Caraga and Northern Mindanao.
According to Philippines News Agency, Maj. Gen. Jose Maria Cuerpo II, commander of the Philippine Army's 4th Infantry Division (4ID), reported the surrenders and recovery of various firearms following operations over the weekend. In Northern Mindanao, the 1st Special Forces Battalion's operation in Barangay Mampayag, Manolo Fortich, Bukidnon province, led to the surrender of five NPA rebels, including a vice commander of the NPA's North Central Mindanao Regional Committee. The surrendered individuals handed over two AK-47 rifles, two M16 rifles, and an M14 rifle to the Army. In the Caraga region, a skirmish in Barangay Sta. Cruz, Sibagat, Agusan del Sur, during a patrol by the Army's 65th Infantry Battalion resulted in the seizure of an AK-47 rifle, an M16 rifle, backpacks, and assorted ammunition. The NPA rebels withdrew from the site following the clash. Cuerpo encouraged remaining insurgents in the two regions to surrender peacefully and return to their families and communities.