9 rebel returned, get P585,000 aid

NINE communist rebel returnees received a total amount of P585,000 and a livelihood assistance from the Compostela Valley Provincial Government under the Comprehensive Local Integration Program.

Captain Rhyan Batchar, spokesperson of the 10th Infantry Division, told reporters that last Monday an awarding ceremony was conducted in province for the ex-New People's Army (NPA) fighters, who sought reform.

"This is the amount given to former rebels to return to the folds of the law as initial livelihood cash assistance," he said.

The effort is geared to encourage more NPA rebels to surrender to the authorities and return to the mainstream society. It is considered as the result of their intensive campaign for them to lay down their arms and come down from the hinterlands to adhere in the peace and development efforts of the government.

Batchar said in their area of responsibility, they noted 92 surrenderers since the lifting of the unilateral ceasefire last February.

They have also recorded one rearrested rebel, five killed and eight captured. Likewise, they have recovered 53 high powered firearms and 47 improvised explosives device. (JCR)