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Army soldier killed, 2 others hurt in NCotabato ambush

November 11, 2011 3:15pm

KIDAPAWAN CITY — An Army soldier was killed while two others were wounded when fired at by suspected communist rebels in a remote village in Makilala town in North Cotabato province early Friday, a regional military officer said.

Lt. Col. Joven Gonzales, commander of the Army's 57th Infantry Battalion, identified the government fatality as Pfc. Alex Calon while those wounded were Cpl. Hassan Sarif and Pfc. Dandie Garbo.

All government casualties were members of Gonzales' battalion.

Gonzales said that arounf 7 a.m., the soldiers were on their way to the command post located just few kilometres away from their detachment to recharge their batteries and get their food supplies when they were fired at by the rebels who were positioned on top of a hill.

"The Army detachment at Purok-6, one of our farthest outposts, has no electricity so our soldiers have to recharge their celfon and radio batteries to our command post located at the center of the village," said Gonzales.

Calon, who was walking past behind Sarif and Garbo, was badly hit and died on the spot.

"I just took cover and ran for safety. I saw how the soldier died after he was hit. The other two soldiers also took cover but they were also wounded," said Raymond [not his real name], a 16-year-old witness.

"Our soldiers were wearing civilian clothes so they’re not in the fighting position. They were ambushed. Only one of them brought a firearm," Gonzales said

The attack sent residents in the area into panic.

Rubber planter Edgar Guzon, 42, said he decided to stay at home instead of going to his farm when he heard gunshots.

The Barangay Peacekeeping Action Team (BPAT) in Barangay Batasan has immediately called for an emergency meeting to discuss the recent NPA attack.

They feared the unstable peace and order situation in their village might affect the completion of two government projects: one a school building and the other road rehabilitation. — RSJ, GMA News