The “senseless destruction” allegedly caused by communist rebels in Davao City during the Holy Week was condemned by the Philippine government.
“The fact that three consecutive attacks happened during the observance of Holy Week all the more angers us,” Presidential Peace Adviser Jesus Dureza said in a statement.
Suspected members of the New People’s Army (NPA) torched heavy equipment in three separate incidents over the weekend.
According to news reports, the first incident happened on the evening of March 31 when suspected militants burned four dump trucks and a backhoe in Brgy. Callawa in Buhangin District. It was followed by an incident in Brgy. Fatima, Paquibato District, where two heavy equipment valued at P15 million were burnt.
Meanwhile early Sunday, April 1, the communist rebels burned a backhoe worth P8 million in Brgy. Dalagdag in Calinan town.
“This unnecessarily squanders whatever gains we have been quietly getting lately in our common efforts with the Communist Party of the Philippines/NPA/National Democratic Front leadership to achieve just peace through the negotiations table,” Dureza said.
Despite some lawmakers calling for the resumption of peace talks of both sides, Dureza said there must be an “enabling environment” conducive for the negotiations.
“We are therefore saddened by the consequent setback these attacks bring to our efforts,” he added.