Rebels kill 2 soldiers in quake-hit Philippine province

Oct 26, 2022, 1:36 PM | Updated: Oct 27, 2022, 3:48 am
A man walks beside a damaged wall after a strong earthquake at Ilocos Norte, Northern Philippines o...

A man walks beside a damaged wall after a strong earthquake at Ilocos Norte, Northern Philippines on Wednesday Oct. 26, 2022. A strong earthquake rocked a large swathe of the northern Philippines, injuring multiple people and forcing the closure of an international airport and the evacuation of patients in a hospital, officials said Wednesday. (AP Photo)

(AP Photo)

MANILA, Philippines (AP) — Suspected communist rebels killed two soldiers in an attack Thursday in a northern Philippine province where troops are helping residents recover from a strong earthquake, the military said.

The attack by suspected New People’s Army guerrillas in Malibcong town in Abra province also injured one soldier and left another missing, military officials said. It was unclear whether the missing soldier was seized by the rebels.

The province was hit by a magnitude 6.4 earthquake on Sunday that was felt across a wide swath of the country’s main northern Luzon region. At least 44 people were injured by the quake, which damaged more than 2,000 houses, schools, hospitals and stone churches, and prompted the overnight closure of an international airport, disaster officials said.

While helping the region recover, local officials are also bracing for an approaching storm that may batter Abra and other nearby provinces.

Military officials strongly condemned the rebel assault. The soldiers who came under attack had been ordered to return to camp from counter-insurgency patrols for possible deployment to quake-hit villages, they said.

“This gruesome ambush against our soldiers in disaster-response mode is another proof of their cruelty and inhumanity to our countrymen,” Brig. Gen. Audrey Pasia said in a statement.

Pasia said the military would continue providing help to the quake-shattered region despite the attack.

There was no immediate reaction from the communist guerrillas.

The military also reported a separate clash that killed two of at least seven communist guerrillas on Wednesday in the eastern province of Camarines Sur.

Five of the rebels managed to escape in the hinterlands near Garchitorena town where troops recovered the bodies of two slain insurgents along with three rifles, two pistols, two anti-personnel mines, various types of ammunition and other rebel belongings, regional army spokesman Maj. John Paul Belleza said.

In southern Davao city, President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. led a ceremony in which he repeated an earlier declaration by local officials that the large port city and five outlying provinces, which comprise a region that used to be a rebel hotbed, were now “insurgency-free.”

“It is a victory which proves there is no place for extremism and senseless violence anywhere in the Philippines,” Marcos Jr. said.

“I believe that there is no better way to commemorate the eradication of insurgency in Davao than to declare the region as a tourism and investment-ready destination,” he said.

The Davao region, one of the most economically vibrant in the country’s south, was deeply battered by the coronavirus pandemic and lockdowns.

The Maoist rebel force was established in 1969 with only about 60 armed fighters in the country’s northern region but gradually expanded across the country and became one of Asia’s longest-running communist insurgencies.

The guerrillas remain a key national security threat despite battle setbacks, surrenders and infighting. The rebellion has left about 40,000 combatants and civilians dead and stunted economic development in remote regions where the military says a few thousand insurgents are still active.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Associated Press

IS claims attack at Pakistan embassy that wounded guard

ISLAMABAD (AP) — The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for last week’s shooting at the Pakistani embassy in Afghanistan in which the head of the mission escaped unharmed but a guard was wounded. In a brief statement late Saturday, IS claimed two of its fighters attacked “the renegade Pakistani ambassador and his guards” while they […]
1 day ago
FILE - In this Tuesday, March 22, 2016 file photo, police and rescue teams are pictured outside the...
Associated Press

Survivors of Brussels suicide attacks seek closure at trial

BRUSSELS (AP) — Jaana Mettala was six months pregnant and on her way to work when the bomb exploded in the heart of Brussels’ European Union quarter. She suffered severe burns, but Mettala and her baby survived — 32 other people did not. It’s now more than six years since the deadliest peacetime attacks on […]
1 day ago
A man looks on as Mount Semeru releases volcanic materials during an eruption on Sunday, Dec. 4, 20...
Associated Press

Indonesia’s Mt. Semeru unleashes lava river in new eruption

JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) — Indonesia’s highest volcano on its most densely populated island released searing gas clouds and rivers of lava in its latest eruption Sunday. Monsoon rains eroded and finally collapsed the lava dome atop 3,676-meter (12,060-foot) Mount Semeru, causing the eruption, according to National Disaster Management Agency spokesperson Abdul Muhari, citing information from […]
1 day ago
Participants get ready for the Miss Trans Northeast 22, beauty pageant in Guwahati, India, Wednesda...
Associated Press

AP PHOTOS: Pageant celebrates transgender life in India

GUWAHATI, India (AP) — Anilya Boro may not have won the crown at India’s Miss Trans NE pageant this year, but having her parents there in support was a validation in its own right. “I must prove to my parents that I can do something as a girl,” said the 22-year-old. “I didn’t win a […]
1 day ago
Associated Press

Today in History: December 4, the “Million Dollar Quartet”

Today in History Today is Sunday, Dec. 4, the 338th day of 2022. There are 27 days left in the year. Today’s Highlights in History: On Dec. 4, 1956, Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis and Carl Perkins gathered for the first and only time for a jam session at Sun Records in Memphis. […]
1 day ago
Associated Press

Saturday’s Scores

BOYS PREP BASKETBALL= Annie Wright 70, White River 63 Arlington 86, Camas 80 Auburn 83, North Kitsap 62 Bellingham 72, Granite Falls 43 Blaine 80, Bear Creek School 38 Brewster 77, St. George’s 62 Cascade (Everett) 66, Oak Harbor 57 Chiawana 65, Ferris 58 Chief Leschi 67, Evergreen Lutheran 35 Columbia (Burbank) 76, Cle Elum/Roslyn […]
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

Comcast Ready for Business Fund...
Ilona Lohrey | President and CEO, GSBA

GSBA is closing the disparity gap with Ready for Business Fund

GSBA, Comcast, and other partners are working to address disparities in access to financial resources with the Ready for Business fund.

Medicare open enrollment is here and SHIBA can help!

The SHIBA program – part of the Office of the Insurance Commissioner – is ready to help with your Medicare open enrollment decisions.
Lake Washington Windows...

Choosing Best Windows for Your Home

Lake Washington Windows and Doors is a local window dealer offering the exclusive Leak Armor installation.
Anacortes Christmas Tree...

Come one, come all! Food, Drink, and Coastal Christmas – Anacortes has it all!

Come celebrate Anacortes’ 11th annual Bier on the Pier! Bier on the Pier takes place on October 7th and 8th and features local ciders, food trucks and live music - not to mention the beautiful views of the Guemes Channel and backdrop of downtown Anacortes.
Swedish Cyberknife Treatment...

The revolutionary treatment of Swedish CyberKnife provides better quality of life for majority of patients

There are a wide variety of treatments options available for men with prostate cancer. One of the most technologically advanced treatment options in the Pacific Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform at Swedish Medical Center.
Work at Zum Services...

Seattle Public Schools announces three-year contract with Zum

Seattle Public Schools just announced a three-year contract with a brand-new company to the Pacific Northwest to assist with their student transportation: Zum.
Rebels kill 2 soldiers in quake-hit Philippine province