BALBALAN, Kalinga – A government trooper was hurt after elements of the Alpha Company of the 50th Infatry Battalion were fired upon by more or less fifteen members of the New Peoples Army (NPA) rebels while they were conducting separate community outreach works in barangays Balantoy and Maling here around 3 pm Saturday.
Police and military authorities identified the wounded solider as Pfc. Melnes Caoti, a member of the Alpha Company of the 50th Infantry Battalion, who hails from Upi, Gamo, Isabela.
Initial investigation showed the government troopers were conducting separate community outreach programs in the two remote barangays of the municipality when some of the rebels fired upon the military personnel in barangay Balantoy but no one was reportedly hurt in the first harassment incident.
After around 5 minutes, another group of rbels fired upon the government forces ding community work in barangay Maling that resulted to the injury sustained by Pfc Calaoti.
The government forces fought back causing the rebels to retreat from the barangay while the wounded soldier was immediately subject to first aid treatment before he was transferred to the Kalinga provincial hospital where he is now in stable condition.
Military authorities condemned the cowardly act of the rebels in harassing government forces who were doing community work to assist the people in the community, saying that such act us uncalled for and a treacherous act of the communist rebels.
Bu Dexter A. See