CAMP AGUINALDO, Quezon City – The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) continues to weaken Communist Terrorist Groups (CTG) as 19 members surrendered, 17 were killed and two apprehended in combat operations from May 4 to 11.

The series of focused military operations also resulted to the seizure of 37 high-powered firearms, 10 improvised explosive devices, and 1,262 rounds of assorted ammunition from CTG members.

Most recent of the surrenders was a female mass organizer who yielded to joint elements of Philippine Army and Philippine National Police in Pandi, Bulacan on May 10. Also significant was the surrender of three CTGs who brought along their firearms in Kapatagan, Lanao del Norte on May 7. This was facilitated by the Army’s 5th Mechanized Battalion, 2nd Mechanized Brigade, and the Kapatagan Municipal Government.

On May 4, eight members of the CTG’s underground mass organization yielded to the 71st Infantry Battalion in Mawab, Davao de Oro. Other surrenders include one in Imelda, Zamboanga Sibugay; two in Rizal, Occidental Mindoro; one in Bansud Oriental Mindoro; one in Midsalip, Zamboanga del Sur; and two in Malapatan, Sarangani Province.

Among latest operations that accounted for enemy fatalities was on May 10 were elements of the 23IB under the 402nd Brigade engaged the enemy in a running gun battle targeting around 80 CTGs in Gingoog City, Misamis Oriental that led to the neutralization of 10 terrorists.

Another encounter was in Bulan, Sorsogon on May 8 where joint AFP-PNP elements clashed with undetermined number of CTGs that resulted to five enemy body counts. Two more were killed in an encounter between troops of 53rd Infantry battalion and communist terrorists in Midsalip, Zamboanga del Sur on May 11.

Meanwhile a wounded CTG member was captured following a combat operation in Siaayan, Zamboanga del Norte on May 6. On the same day, joint AFP and PNP troops apprehended another member in Dinagat, Agusan del Norte.

For the period from May 4 up to May 11, the AFP captured four M16A1 rifles, four M16 rifles, three carbine M1 rifles, four AK47 rifles, M653 rifle, two M14 rifles, improvised M14 rifle, two M79 Grenade Launchers, two machine guns, four grenade, five caliber .45 pistol, three air guns, shotgun and a caliber .38 revolver. Aside from armaments, medical supplies, bandoliers and subversive documents were also seized from the CTGs.

“The AFP leadership lauds the dedication of our troops for continuing the momentum to destroy the capabilities of the communist terrorist groups. Their dwindling numbers marks their more than 50 years of failed revolution as they continue to lose their mass base support,” AFP Chief of Staff General Felimon Santos Jr. said.

“The increase in surrenders and firearms gained from communist terrorist groups indicate the criminal organizations’ dwindling strength. With the support from the NTF-ELCAC and local governments, it is now more than ever that the synergy of every agency and partner stakeholder is needed to sustain our momentum in solving the decades-old problem of insurgency, even at the face a global pandemic,” General Santos said.