LEGAZPI CITY (Sept. 16, 2011) – Four soldiers were wounded in a clash Thursday afternoon with New People’s Army (NPA) rebels along the Maharlika Highway in the vicinity of Barangays Daguit and Malangcao-Basud in Labo town, Camarines Norte, a military officer said.
A squad of Philippine Army soldiers on board a military truck was negotiating the highway at about 3:45 p.m. Thursday when they were fired at with assault rifles by at least 30 NPA rebels who were already in a vantage position, Army Maj. Angelo Guzman, the 9th Infantry Division spokesperson, said.
The Army squad led by 2nd Lt. Mark Philip Magora of the 92nd Division Reconnaissance Company jumped off the military truck and engaged the rebels in a 30-minute fire fight.
Wounded in the fire fight were Privates First Class Marlon Gastillo, Mark Anthony Villaruel, Larry Joshua Magalona and Jeaner Bitagara, all members of the 902nd Brigade in Tulay na Lupa, Labo, Camarines Norte.
Guzman said the Army troopers were on their way to the brigade headquarters to attend a coordinating conference regarding an upcoming Provincial Multisectoral Caravan when the ambush took place.
The wounded soldiers were treated at the Camarines Norte provincial hospital.
Hot pursuit operation is now being carried out in the area where the rebels are believed to be in hiding. (PNA)