“We strongly condemn in the strongest terms the NPA attack on our soldiers while the latter were doing community work in Barangay Puray, Rodriguez, Rizal in the face of a declaration of ceasefire on both sides and in the midst of an emergency health crisis,” Chief Presidential Legal Counsel & Presidential Spokesperson Salvador S. Panelo said in a statement March 29.
He added that this armed attack by the NPA against government troops “exposes the insincerity of the former in declaring a ceasefire as well as their blatant disregard of the welfare of the Filipino people they claim to fight for as their armed assault against the soldiers who were doing community work in connection with the government’s battle against COVID-19 has placed the civilians in imminent danger and disrupted the implementation of the enhanced community quarantine in that area.”
“That NPA attack which resulted in the death of one soldier and wounding of two others and heavy casualties to the enemy unmasked the treacherous character of the NPA when it declared a ceasefire following the government’s own declaration,” Panelo said.
“That we were able to repulse the NPA’s perfidious armed offensive demonstrates the preparedness of our armed forces against the purveyors of hate and anarchy even as they perform their additional task of assisting in the implementation of the protocols and guidelines established by the government,” he added.
“Let this be a warning to the enemies of the state that the constituted authorities are equipped and ready to repel any and all transgressions of law and crush any armed attack against our soldiers and civilians with ferocity and might,” Panelo said.