MANILA, Philippines – The military claimed it has recovered 163 pieces of landmines in an alleged regional landmine factory of the New People’s Army (NPA) in Agusan del Sur.
“This is the biggest NPA landmine factory discovered so far. Indeed, the timely recovery of NPA landmines by our troops saved lives of the public,” said Eastern Mindanao Command (Eastmincom) chief Lieutenant General Ricardo Rainier Cruz III
“The National Democratic Front (NDF) wants to talk peace with the government. However they still continue to manufacture weapon of mass destruction. It is clear that the NDF are not really sincere about peace after all,” he added in a statement.
The NDF is the political arm of the NPA.
Residents of Barangay Kauswagan in Loreto town supposedly provided military the information about the landmine factory. A generator set was also recovered, said Eastmincom spokesperon Captain Alberto Caber.
Since 2010, a total of 453 NPA landmines exploded killing 128 people and wounding 325, according to military statistics.
The military reiterated that the use of landmine violates the provisions of the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian law (CARHRIHL).
But founding chairman of the Communist Party of the Philippines Jose Maria Sison defended them. “Landmines are a poor man’s weapon. Aerial bombing and artillery fire are weapons of those who oppress the people,” Sison told Rappler in an online chat in June. (READ: Landmines: a poor man’s weapon?)
The military has been fighting the communist insurgency for 4 decades now. – Rappler.com
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