Dela Rosa says NPA hit squad stepped up its attacks
Philippine National Police (PNP) Director General Ronald Dela Rosa on Thursday said the New People's Army hit squad Special Partisan Unit (Sparu) has stepped up its attacks.
In a press briefing, Dela Rosa said the Sparu units boosted their operations against government forces after President Rodrigo Duterte declared termination of peace talks with communist rebels last year.
"They stepped up (operation) now but then again sorry because it will be hard for them unlike... in the early 80s where they were able to convince the public, especially in the slum areas. They were able to hold them," Dela Rosa said.
"But now, it will be difficult for them because it’s only one text away to report them. They can’t control one area," he added.
Dela Rosa said Duterte also commissioned retired police officers to re-orient those assigned in the field so they will be aware how the NPA operates.
The Sparu unit, according to Dela Rosa, mostly operates in Mindanao particularly in Northern Mindanao, Davao Region, Soccsksargen and Caraga. Its primary task is to "liquidate" its enemies, which include policemen and soldiers.
“There are reports that they shoot police officers and soldiers,” he said.
Duterte warned security forces against the resurgence of the group in their locality.
“Be careful, they (Sparu hit men) are active now,” Duterte told the troops in Zamboanga City last March 10.
Duterte told soldiers and policemen to be watchful of their surroundings, especially at home, citing two to three soldiers die daily from these attacks in the country. Ella Dionisio/DMS