PNP on 'full alert' as CPP-NPA ends ceasefire


Posted at May 03 2020 02:14 PM

The Philippine National Police (PNP) said Saturday it was on "full alert" status after communist rebels ended their temporary truce with the government even as the country continues to battle the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

In a statement, the PNP said its 205,000-strong force was ready to defend the country against any atrocities from the New People's Army (NPA), the armed wing of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP).

PNP Spokesperson Police Brig. Gen. Bernard Banac said they will uphold public safety against the "communist terrorist group" while they continued to implement the enhanced community quarantine and general community quarantine in parts of the country.

The CPP on Thursday ended its unilateral ceasefire and ordered the NPA to transition to an offensive posture.

The CPP earlier claimed that in the past 36 days, the Armed Force of the Philippines launched at least 36 attacks against the NPA in 23 provinces.

The government, meanwhile, said the rebels had attacked soldiers despite the ceasefire, even those tasked to deliver relief to communities affected by the pandemic. 

The United Nations Security Council earlier called for a 90-day worldwide "humanitarian pause" during the coronavirus pandemic.

President Rodrigo Duterte said he was closing his doors to peace negotiations with the rebels and warned he might declare martial law if they continued to attack state troops.