MANILA — President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. on Thursday said the country must be "continuously vigilant" amid recent violent incidents in Masbate.
The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) has confirmed that a firefight ensued between communist rebels and government troops near a school in Masbate earlier this week.
"We are deeply concerned over the incidents of violence in Masbate which had traumatized the affected civilians who were generally school children and their teachers,” Marcos said in a tweet.
“This just demonstrates that although we have made much progress in the fight against the Communist Terrorists Groups, we must be continuously vigilant so that such murderous abuses are avoided in the future."
Marcos had told the Philippine Army that the government is investing in the modernization of its equipment as well as the training of soldiers to ensure that government forces would be formidable against internal threat groups like the New People’s Army.
He said the military should also make adjustments on how it handles "the emerging threat" hounding Philippine territory.