MANILA – The Philippine National Police is monitoring the movements of some former members of communist hit squad Revolutionary Proletarian Army-Alex Boncayao Brigade who have allegedly turned to Islamist extremism.
National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) chief, Director Oscar Albayalde, said police intelligence operatives have monitored some former RPA-ABB members who converted to Islam and are now in Manila.
“We’ve monitored a few of them who converted to Islam. As what we've observed in Mindanao, itong mga extremists, basically most of them are ‘balik Islam’. Although not all balik Islam are extremists,” Albayalde said in a news conference in Malacañang.
“Matagal na yan. Because ABB has been declining, medyo hindi na rin aktibo yan, probably they are looking for another group that will support them.”
The RPA-ABB, a breakaway faction of the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army, carried out killings during its heyday. Some of its members had since turned to the folds of the law.
Albayalde said the police continue to monitor the movements of these former RPA-ABB members, but he assured the public that these individuals are not capable of carrying out a massive attack.
Metro Manila’s top cop revealed this as he shared NCRPO's preparations for the upcoming celebration of the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), which is currently being chaired by the Philippines.
Foreign ministers and senior officials from 27 countries will gather in Manila for the 50th SEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting and Related Meetings at the Philippine International Convention Center on August 2 to 8.
Some 1,700 delegates are expected to be in the Philippines for the week-long ASEAN activities and meetings.
"We have done our part. Preparations have been made since last year. I think with all our efforts, we are very much ready to secure the leaders," he said.