Suspected communist rebels killed a policeman and wounded at least three others during a daring attack on a police station in Kibawe town of Bukidnon yesterday morning, police and military said.
Senior Supt. Wilben Mayor, spokesman for the Office of the Chief of the Philippine National Police (PNP), said a 40-minute gun battle occurred between the rebels and the policemen before the attackers fled.
He identified the lone fatality as SPO2 Rodelfin Alonzo.
Wounded were PO3 Jona Roban, PO2 Johnrey Manigo, and PO2 Elizar Lacoste.
“We received reports that there were undetermined casualties on the side of the rebels,” said Mayor.
Captain Christian Uy, spokesman of the Army’s 4th Infantry Division, said there were about 30 to 40 communist rebels who participated in the attack that occurred at around 5 a.m.
He said they were on board four vans and pick-up vehicles.
The rebels, Uy added, are believed to have come from North Cotabato.
Mayor, on the other hand, said the rebels were clad in camouflaged uniform of the Army.
Both Mayor and Uy said additional government troopers were sent to Bukidnon to hunt down the fleeing rebels, adding that hospitals and clinics were also checked for the wounded.
Supt. Michael Pareja, spokesman of the Northern Mindanao regional police, said the rebels carted away seven M16 rifles and six pistols.
“There was an immediate pursuit operation but while the police and soldiers were on their way, one of the vehicles was hit by an improvised explosive device planted on the roadside,” said Pareja. (Aaron B. Recuenco)