Filipino rebels detonate mines, 16 hurt

2014-03-03 09:51


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Manila - Philippine communist rebels using land mines have wounded 11 troops and five civilians in the south of the country, military officials said on Monday.

Army Colonel Marcos Norman Flores, Jr, a brigade commander in the area, condemned the attacks as a violation of international humanitarian law.

New People's Army guerrillas encountered troops on Sunday morning in Davao del Sur province, triggering an hour-long clash.

As troops maneuvered, the rebels exploded a land mine, wounding 11 soldiers, a military statement said. It quoted villagers as saying the rebels carried away four dead colleagues.

The guerrillas later set off a land mine as three ambulances were heading to evacuate injured troops, wounding five civilian volunteers.

The rebellion began in the late 1960s with a ragtag group armed with a few rifles. The movement peaked during the repressive years under dictator Ferdinand Marcos with several thousand full-time guerrillas.

Though it remains one of the world's longest-running Marxist insurgencies, the rebel movement has grown considerably weaker in recent years due to battle setbacks, surrenders and factionalism. They remain a national security concern.

Talks to end the rebellion have stalled since 2011 due to disagreements between the government and guerrillas over the release of several jailed rebel leaders.

Read more on:    philippines

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