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Militiaman killed as Army, Reds clash in ComVal.

A militiaman was killed in an armed encounter between soldiers of the Army's 60th Infantry Battalion (60IB) and members of the communist New People's Army (NPA) in the municipality of Laak, Compostela Valley on Tuesday.

1st Lt. Amadeuz VJ Celestial, Civil-military operations officer of the 60IB, said Citizen Armed Force Geographical Unit (Cafgu) member Cherwyn Paragoya was killed while assisting 60IB troops when they encountered some 25 rebels believed to be under the NPA's Guerilla Front 33 in the vicinity of Barangay. Ceboleda in Laak town.

Celestial said the firefight lasted more than an hour before the rebels scurried off to different directions.

Upon scouring the area, the troops discovered bloodstains, indicating that some of the rebels were wounded during the encounter, he said.

Celestial said that as a government militiaman for almost 10 years, Paragoya was tasked to help maintain peace and order in his village.

In a statement, 60IB commander, Lt. Col. Gilbert Ombos, said they were saddened by the death of Paragoya.

'Hearing the stories of his peers, he was no doubt instrumental in keeping the peace in his community. It is heartbreaking that we should lose valuable life for something as futile and worthless as this insurgency. They ought to follow CAA Paragoya's example and be the vanguards of peace in their respective communities,' he added.

Mayor Antonio Libuangan of Laak and Governor Jayvee Tyron Uy of Compostela Valley province pledged assistance for Paragoya's family.

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Publication:Philippines News Agency
Date:Aug 21, 2019
Words:291
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