Rebels raid Iloilo police station

SUSPECTED members of the communist New People's Army (NPA) raided Sunday, June 18, the municipal police station of Maasin in Iloilo province.

Chief Inspector Aaron Palomo, public information officer (PIO) of Philippine National Police Iloilo Provincial Office, said 50 to 70 armed men swooped down on the station at about 11 a.m. Sunday.

No one was reported hurt in the incident but the rebels carted away four Glock pistols and 9 Armalite rifles.

They also took the patrol car, but later abandoned this in the neighboring town of Alimodian.

"We have recovered the patrol car as well as the truck used by the rebels. Follow-up operations are ongoing," Palomo said in a telephone interview.

Prior to the raid, Palomo said two suspected rebels went inside the station to supposedly have an incident recorded in the police blotter.

While the duty officer was interviewing them, a truck full of armed men arrived at the station and the two rebels inside announced a raid. By then, the rebels have blocked major roads leading to the station.

"It happened fast. They announced a raid, handcuffed our men, took their firearms and left. No one was injured," Palomo said.

At the time, Palomo said five policemen were in the station. Maasin is a fourth-class town situated about 28 kilometers west of Iloilo City, the provincial capital. (MVI/SunStar Philippines)