CAGAYAN DE ORO City, Dec. 17, 2010â€”The start of the 18-day ceasefire between the government and the communist front on December 16 was marred by a 30-minute gunfight in Lianga, Surigao del Sur.
About 15 New Peopleâ€™s Army (NPA) rebels encountered soldiers belonging to the 75th Infantry Battalion who were on foot patrol around 4 a.m. Thursday, said Major Eugenio Julio Osias, chief of the Civil Military Operations Battalion of the 4th Infantry â€œDiamondâ€ Division.
No fatalities or casualties were reported from both sides.
The Maoist insurgents fled after 30 minutes. They were pursued by the government troops, led by a certain 1stLt. Manucan.
The soldiers, however, recovered from the scene subversive documents, compact discs, two CPP-NPA-NDA flags and others.
Major Gen. Victor A. Felix, commanding general of the 4th ID based in Camp Edilberto Evangelista in Barangay Patag, Cagayan de Oro City, said that the NPA rebels might use the ceasefire to sow terror in the countrysides.
Felix ordered all units under the 4th ID to be always vigilant despite the ceasefire agreement, the longest in 10 years.
The government and the CPP-NPA-NDF forged some two weeks ago the ceasefire agreement, which took effect Dec. 16 (Thursday) and will end on January 3, 2011 during informal talks in Hong Kong. (Bong D. Fabe)