MANILA: A high-ranking communist rebel officer has been arrested in the Philippines, a military official said yesterday, amid a surge of deadly clashes between soldiers and the insurgents.
On Friday police arrested Felix Armodia -- a regional secretary of the New People’s Army (NPA), the CPP’s armed wing -- in the southern island of Mindanao, the region’s military commander said.
Lieutenant General Ricardo Rainier Cruz said Armodia is accused of masterminding a series of attacks on businesses and farms that did not give in to NPA extortion demands
There has been an increase in the number of deadly encounters following the arrest of the CPP leaders.
Three soldiers were killed in a NPA ambush in the northern Philippines on Thursday, while three NPA guerillas were killed in a clash with troops in Mindanao on Wednesday.
A NPA officer, Recto Golimlim, was killed while fighting with troops in the town of Magallanes, 560 kilometres south of Manila on April 27.
He was the region’s second-in-command as well as being an explosives expert, a military statement said.