BACOLOD CITY – Government troopers condemned the killing of two soldiers in an ambush in Sitio Cambaga, Barangay Yao-yao, Cauayan town, Negros Occidental on Black Saturday, April 3.
“They died as heroes protecting the people of Cauayan,” read a statement of the Philippine Army.
Cpl. Alaster Balboa of Zamboanga City and Sgt. Jhoem Meguillo of North Cotabato were on board a motorcycle when they were ambushed by suspected rebels of the New People’s Army (NPA) rebels.
Their bodies were flown to their respective provinces after a send-off ceremony at the Bacolod Silay Airport on Easter Sunday, April 4.
According to Maj. Cenon Pancito, Army 3rd Infantry Division information chief, the soldiers were gathering information for the army’s Community Support Program (CSP) when they were ambushed.
Barangay Yao-yao is one of the areas in Negros Occidental where the NPA thrives. The CSP operations in the area greatly affected the communist terrorist groups.
“Our soldiers sacrificed a lot and risk their lives in the service of the country to protect the people in Negros so we can have peace”, Lt. Col Erwin Cariño, 15IB Commanding officer, said.
“We honor the heroism and sacrifices of our fallen comrades and will ensure that justice will be served,” Cariño added.
Col. Leonardo Peña, 302nd Brigade Commander, condemned what he called a “barbaric act perpetrated by the CPP-NPA terrorists, in their desperation to hamper the peace and progress brought by the presence of our soldiers in the communities through various activities of our Community Support Operators in the area.”
“These senseless attacks prove once again that these communist terrorist groups are human rights violators. Our slain soldiers are just doing their job to help in the progress of the communities in the far-flung barangays,” Peña said.
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