Gov’t troops nab top Sorsogon rebel leader
By Bobby Q. Labalan SORSOGON CITY --- A ranking official of the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF) in Sorsogon was arrested by government troops as attempts to end the decades-old insurgency through peace talks bogged down. Senior Supt. Ronaldo Cabral, director of the Sorsogon Provincial Police Office (PPO) in an interview Monday, said Emmanuel Alindogan More alias “Ka Cris,” 53, was nabbed by joint operatives of Sorsogon PPO and 31st Infantry Battalion of the Philippine Army in Barangay Tughan, Juban at around 1:50 p.m. on Sunday. “More is currently the secretary and finance officer of Larangan 1 of CPP-NPA-NDF operating in the province, particularly in Sorsogon City, Barcelona, Casiguran, Gubat, and Prieto-Diaz,” he said. Cabral, however, did not state the circumstances surrounding the arrest, whether the rebel leader resisted or gave up peacefully. More’s arrest, by virtue of a warrant issued by Judge Victor C. Gella, Regional Trial Court Branch 52, Sorsogon City for attempted murder under Criminal Case No. 2007-6945, occurred just a day after the rebel group officially terminated its unilateral ceasefire following the withdrawal of the government peace panel from the peace talks. The government had earlier formally served notice to the CPP-NPA-NDF peace panel on the official termination of the Joint Agreement on Safety and Immunity Guarantee or JASIG. Cabral added that earlier during the week, two armed clashes between the government and rebel forces had occurred in Sorsogon within a span of only four days. NPA rebels and Army troopers clashed at Sitio Burabod, Barangay Trece Martirez, Casiguran town on February 6 while another encounter occurred at Barangay Tula-Tula Norte, Magallanes in the morning of February 10. Two army personnel were reported injured in the Casiguran clash but none was reported in the encounter in Magallanes.