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2 dead as rebels attack gov’t project in Camarines

A soldier and a militiaman were killed while another soldier was wounded after suspected New People’s Army rebels attacked a government bridge project in Barangay Daguit, Labo, Camarines Norte Saturday.

Armed Forces Southern Luzon Command spokesperson Major Angelo Guzman said the unprovoked assault took place at 11 p.m.

A squad composed of soldiers from the 49th Infantry Battalion, augmented by Citizens Armed Forces Geographical Unit Active Auxiliaries from the 22nd Infantry Battalion CAFGU, was securing the Namukanan Bridge Project being constructed by EUS Construction when the rebels launched the attack.

The rebels were reportedly surprised of the presence of the soldiers in the area. The clash lasted for an hour and resulted in the death of a trooper and a militiaman and wounding of another soldier.

The fatalities were identified as Private Reymark Camila Regore of the 49th Infantry Battalion and Anthony M. Aceron of the 22nd Infantry Battalion CAFGU.

The wounded soldier was identified as Private First Class Jhelor P. Caranzo.

The government lost two M-14 carbines and an M-16 automatic rifle but inflicted an undetermined number of casualties among the rebels aside from capturing an NPA M-16 in the hour-long firefight.

The rebels withdrew after more troops arrived to reinforce the soldiers defending the construction site.

“We foiled the NPAs plan of destroying the project and the construction equipment; we secured the bridge project that will benefit the people; but we lost two brave men while serving their country,” Southern Luzon Command chief Lt. Gen. Ricardo R. Visaya said. (PNA, Aaron B. Recuenco, and Ruel Saldico)