PNP braces for possible attacks ahead of NPA anniversary

Bianca Dava, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Mar 26 2018 04:09 PM | Updated as of Dec 22 2018 09:38 PM

FILE PHOTO: Guerrillas of the New People's Army (NPA) stand in formation in the Sierra Madre mountain range, July 30, 2017. Noel Celis, AFP

MANILA - Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Ronald dela Rosa on Monday directed all unit commanders to tighten security in police posts and government installations in preparation for possible attacks by the New People's Army ahead of its founding anniversary.

The NPA will mark its 50th anniversary on March 29, Holy Thursday. The force earlier warned of the supposed reactivation of the New People's Army's (NPA) Special Partisan Unit (Sparu), an urban hit squad targeting law enforcers, government officials and volunteers.

This followed the collapse of peace negotiations between the government and communist rebels in November, with the President declaring the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) and the NPA collectively as a terror group.

 

"The CPP-NPA is known to launch offensive actions to drumbeat commemoration of significant events in the underground organization," Dela Rosa said in a press briefing at Camp Crame.

"This summer season, we are taking advantage of good weather to launch our own tactical offensive operations against the remaining guerrilla fronts in the countryside, complemented by continuing legal offensive actions against CPP-NPA front organizations, particularly personalities who are wanted by law for criminal offenses," he added.
 
Dela Rosa instructed police regional directors to strengthen defenses of "soft targets."

He also asked officers to step up offensives against insurgents by mobilizing the Barangay Information Network and other intelligence sources in the community.

Duterte earlier declared the CPP-NPA as a terrorist organization. A justice department petition is pending in court seeking to formalize this declaration.

The President said last month he would consult the country’s top military officials on whether or not the government should resume peace talks with communist rebels.