At least 10 were hurt when NPA terrorists detonated an anti-personnel mine on a convoy of vehicles bearing foreign nationals, local volunteers and soldiers escorting the group while passing Sitio Nasandigan, Brgy Kalabugao, Impasug-ong town in Bukidnon, May 30.
Among those hurt were seven army soldiers. In response, the soldiers returned fire and chased the perpetrators, hitting three NPA terrorists as revealed by the troops.
Foreigners from the IP communities in Vietnam, Myanmar, Indonesia and Malaysia came to Sitio Mintapod, Brgy Hagpa to observe the activity of local IP community volunteers belonging to Higaonon Amamag Malandang Olandok Gagaw (Hamog), a non-government organization which promotes cultural preservation in the area. The group is also supposed to have a forest visitation for their “Paunlay Ta Aghimicu” (forest visitation phase II).
Hamog sought the assistance of the Impasugong Indigenous Peoples Mandatory Representative (IPMR) and the Philippine Army for security during their activity.
“We thought a tire exploded, then we heard burst of fire, somebody shouted duck,” a foreigner said. We were afraid but we are very thankful to Filipino soldiers for providing us protection,” she added.
“Our troops discovered two more anti-personnel mines that remained unexploded and left behind by the fleeing terrorists.
These AP mines could have injured the foreign observers. The Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) and Scene of the Crime Operatives (Soco) of the Philippine National Police (PNP) are now recovering those AP mines to avoid harming civilians passers through.
It is obvious that the incident this morning is a direct attack to civilians who are not involved and should be protected from any form of attack. This incident deserves international condemnation on the CPP-NPA terrorists,” Col Edgardo De Leon, 403 brigade commander said.
After the incident, the foreign delegation proceeded to Laguindingan Airport for their flight to their next destination. (By 4ID)
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