FA-50 FIGHTER jets of the Air Forces destroyed a camp of the New People’s Army in Las Navas town in Northern Samar on Saturday after dropping 500-pound bombs on the rebel lair, the military reported yesterday.
There were indications the communist rebels suffered “heavy casualties” after the bombing conducted by supersonic jets, said Capt. Reynaldo Aragones, spokesman of the Army’s 8th Infantry Division based in Catbalogan City.
Aragones said FA-50s dropped the bombs early morning Saturday on the rebel camp in Barangay Capuutoan, surprising about 50 rebels, led by one Ceriano Jerusalem alias Cado, who were in the camp.
Aragones said the rebels were behind the extortion activities in the province.
Recovered from the camp were two sacks of land mines, three cellphones with chargers, an Icom radio, a laptop, a landline tester, 11 flash drives, four SIM cards, two external drives, assorted blasting caps, a roll of detonating wire, four live ammunition for shotgun, 13 live ammunition for M16, an empty magazine for carbine, two improvised grenades, two anti-tank land mines, assorted medical supplies, 14 backpacks, seven hammocks, two sacks of rice, assorted food supplies, a box of dried fish, and documents.
No enemy body was found but troops saw traces of blood in the area, Aragones said.
In Mountain Province, a soldier died and another was injured in skirmishes with NPA rebels in Besao town.
Citing a belated report, 7th ID spokesman Maj. Amado Gutierrez said troops from the Army’s Special Forces Regiment caught up with the rebels in Barangay Suquib on Thursday last week.
Gutierrez said troops first clashed with the rebels around 2:20 p.m. on Thursday. The second firefight occurred two kilometers away at around 4 p.m. during a pursuit operation, against the same rebel group in the same barangay.