MANILA -- Five soldiers of the 41st Infantry Battalion of the Philippine Army were hurt after an encounter with members of the New People's Army (NPA) in Brgy. Lenneg in Baay-Licuan, Abra Sunday evening.
Twenty soldiers went to Brgy. Lenneg in response to a report that 10 armed men were extorting money from residents.
When the soldiers arrived, the alleged rebels fired at them. An exchange of gunfire ensued. The rebels retreated after a few minutes.
Five soldiers were wounded. As of posting, there was no information yet on how many were hurt on the rebels' side.
The Philippine Army said the rebels were members of
Kilusang Larangang Gerilya (KLG) North, which is operating in Abra and nearby provinces of Kalinga, Apayao and Mt. Province.
The military is now performing clearing operations in the area. -- report from Bryan Realgo, ABS-CBN News Ilocos