TACLOBAN CITY-The airstrike in Las Navas, Northern Samar is in accordance with the International Humanitarian Law, contrary to allegations of groups associated with the CPP-NPA, Major General Pio Q. Diñoso III, commander of the 8th Infantry Division of the Philippine Army based in Catbalogan City, told the Philippine Information Agency.
M/Gen. Diñoso underscored that the Armed Forces of the Philippines is the protector of the people and will never put the lives of Filipinos in danger.
“The operation was planned meticulously and executed precisely to ensure that only the terrorist camp is destroyed in order to stop the bomb making activities of the NPA and also to stop them from further terrorizing helpless civilians,” Diñoso added.
The NPA encampment, Diñoso explained, was a bomb-making camp of the terrorists. Bomb components such as anti-tank mines, blasting caps, wires, etc., were found at the site.
The lair was a hiding place of rebel terrorists after attacks on military bases and soldiers doing community protection patrols.
The place was laced with booby traps of explosives not only fatal to foot soldiers but also to civilians.
Moreover, Diñoso disclosed that the site was in an uninhabited part of the town, about 2 kilometers away from the nearest community of Brgy. Caputoan. Civilians were prevented by the rebels to go near.
Besides, the precision bombs were released by pilots who have visuals of their targets to ensure no collateral damage is inflicted.
Information about the NPA lair have been provided by nearby residents themselves who have been victims of extortion, threats and intimidation by these NPA terrorists, Diñoso said. (OPT/PIA-8)