Roxas to run after rebels in Negros ambush

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INTERIOR Secretary Manuel “Mar” Roxas II on Monday condemned the alleged rebel ambush in La Castellana, Negros Occidental early Sunday were nine people, mostly civilians, were killed.

Speaking during the 22nd founding anniversary of the Philippine National Police (PNP) in Camp Crame , the interior secretary vowed to go after ‘rebels and criminals’ behind in the ambush in Negros Island .

“I say this to all na mga masasamang loob na andiyan… You hit one of us, you hit all of us and we will all come after you,” Roxas said in his speech before top police brasses in Camp Crame .

Earlier reports said that nine people, including a police officer, and six others were wounded after suspected New People’s Army (NPA) rebels opened fire on a truck carrying policemen and village watchmen.

“Civilians, barangay tanods and lupons were slain in that attack. They were coming home together with civilians, they were coming home from a fiesta when they were attacked by reported NPA men,” Roxas said.

The interior secretary also lauded the efforts of the La Castellana Municipal police station in attempting to repel the group of armed men that staged the ambush of police and village watchmen.

Reports from the Western Visayas regional police command identified the victims as PO1 Richard Canja; Jonathan Mateo; Ramer Compleza; Ulysis Tamayor; Mario Recablanca; Timo Esplecera; Lito Lucban; Virginia Ordoñez and Ricky Dingcong.

The ambush, perpetrated by New People’s Army (NPA) rebels, occurred at around 3:45am while a Fuzo Canter Truck was proceeding from Brgy. Cabacungan from Brgy. Puso in La Castellana town.

Regional Police Commander, Chief Supt. Agrimero Cruz Jr., said the ambush could be the NPA’s reprisal for the active campaign of Canja’s family and relatives in the campaign against criminality and rebel movement in the area.

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