By FRANCIS T. WAKEFIELD
A four-month old baby including a policeman were reportedly killed by suspected members of the New People’s Army (NPA) during a daring ambush Thursday afternoon in Bukidnon.
The incident transpired after more or less 30 suspected NPA rebels ambushed personnel of the Bumbaran Municipal Police Station onboard their patrol vehicle.
The rebels then fired at a Toyota Fortuner who happened to be tailing the PNP patrol car along Kilometer 28 of the Cagayan de Oro-Dominorog-Kalilangan road, Brgy. Tikalaan,Talakag,Bukidnon, at about 5:30 p.m.
The attack led to the death of a policeman and a four-month old baby identified as Walysha Machorao who was hit in the head while aboard the Fortuner.
Wounded in the attack were two female companions of the infant and three policemen who were with the cop killed in the assault.
The civilian together with five other companions were heading home in Brgy. Kili-kili, Wao, Lanao del Sur after attending to some personal errands in Cagayan de Oro City, while the policemen were on their way back to the Bumbaran Municipal Police Station.
Meanwhile, responding troops from the 1st Special Forces Battalion recovered an Improvised Explosive Device (IED/Landmine), 200-meter long wire, detonating cords, empty shells of AK-47 rifle ammunitions, and subversive documents at the area where the incident transpired.
The military said these acts committed by the NPA bandits are clear violations of the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law or CARHRIHL between the government and the CPP-NPA-NDF as this agreement prohibits attacks against civilians and non-combatants and bans the use of landmine.
Brigadier General Eric C Vinoya, the Commander of the 403rd Infantry Brigade, vehemently condemned the barbaric act of the bandit group.
“We condemn in the strongest possible terms this barbaric act committed by the perpetrators of this incident which resulted to the tragic death of a four-month old baby girl and one of our police personnel.” Vinoya said.
He also lambasted the perpetrators for their lack of regard to human life, most especially the civilians, as evident by their indiscriminate use of firearms.
“These perpetrators can be compared to savages, infant killers, and murderers of innocent civilians, who thrive on abusing the weak by using coercion and intimidation, without giving any regard to human life and established laws.
They do not belong in this civilized society. They will be punished.” he added.