53IB commends soldiers for ‘heroic combat achievement’ against NPA terrorists

The Philippine Army’s 53rd Infantry “Matapat” Battalion (53IB) commended a squad of its Bravo Company for their “heroic achievement” in a clash against the communist New People’s Army (NPA) in Zamboanga del Norte.

HONORED. Lt. Col. Jo-ar Herrera, commander of the 53rd Infantry Battalion, poses with one of the soldier-awardees during a ceremony honoring a squad of the battalion’s Bravo Company on Friday (July 17, 2020) for their “heroic achievement” in the fight against the communist New People’s Army in Zamboanga del Norte. The soldiers managed to recover high-powered firearms and an improvised explosive device during a firefight with communist guerillas in Siayan town, Zamboanga del Norte on July 11, 2020. (Photo courtesy of 53IB)

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Lt. Col. Jo-ar Herrera, 53IB commander, said the nine-man squad managed to recover high-powered firearms and an improvised explosive device (IED) during a firefight with the rebels in Barangay Macasing, Siayan, Zamboanga del Norte on July 11, 2020.

For security reasons, he was unable to release the identities of the soldiers, who received certificates of recognition and letters of commendation.

Herrera led the ceremony in Camp Sabido that houses the battalion headquarters in Guipos, Zamboanga del Sur.

Among the high-powered firearms recovered were a caliber .50 sniper rifle (Barrett), a rocket-propelled grenade, an improvised shotgun, an M-16 rifle, and a 15-kg. IED fashioned out as a landmine.

Herrera said the “communist terrorists” involved in the clash belong to the NPA’s Main Regional Guerilla Unit (MRGU) under the Western Mindanao Regional Party Committee (WMRPC).

He said the squad, headed by a sergeant, demonstrated “outstanding performance and dedication to duty.” (PNA)

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