Communist rebels to help Muslims fight Philippine troops

Communist guerrilla leaders on Thursday directed their armed fighters in the Philippines to launch attacks against government troops to support Muslim rebels facing a massive military offensive in the country's troubled south.

Communist rebels to help Muslims fight Philippine troops
Communist guerrilla leaders on Thursday directed their armed fighters in the Philippines to launch attacks against government troops to support Muslim rebels facing a massive military offensive in the country's troubled south.

The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) ordered its armed wing, the New People's Army (NPA), to take advantage of the security gap in other provinces where the military has pulled out troops to augment forces in the southern region of Mindanao.

The CPP also noted that recent fighting between government troops and Muslim rebels in the southern region of Mindanao has weakened the morale of the soldiers.

Fourteen marines were killed in a day-long battle with Muslim fighters in Basilan island in July, while 26 army troops were killed in another attack by Abu Sayyaf on nearby Jolo island last week.

"The revolutionary forces led by the CPP express full support to the armed resistance of the Moro revolutionary forces," the party's central committee said in a statement.

"The CPP has issued instructions to all units of the NPA in Mindanao and across the country to launch tactical offensives ... and to cooperate with and extend support to the Moro people's armed resistance," it added.

The military has dispatched additional troops to Jolo and Basilan to step up an offensive against Abu Sayyaf rebels and the regional Jemaah Islamiyah network.

Communist rebels have been fighting the government since the late 1960s, making the movement one of the longest-running leftist insurgencies in Asia.

Netherlands-based communist rebel leaders recently rejected a three-year ceasefire proposed by the military's chief of staff as a condition for resuming stalled peace talks, which have been suspended since 2004.

DPA
Last Mod: 16 Ağustos 2007, 17:46
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