Samar ‘misencounter’ won’t dampen Army, PNP cooperation

MANILA -- The misencounter between Army and police units in Samar, which caused the death of six policemen and injuries to nine others, will not dampen the cooperation between the two law enforcement units in carrying out their mandate, a military official said Tuesday.

"Despite this challenge, we will continue to perform our mandate alongside the Philippine National Police (PNP) to serve the interest and protect the well-being of the people," Philippine Army (PA) spokesperson Lt. Col. Louie Villanueva said in text message to reporters.

He also extended the Army's condolences to the families of the slain and wounded police officers.

"This thing, though unexpected and uncalled (for), do happen sometimes in the course of performing our critical task of serving and protecting the people. The incident happened due to the common desire of our forces (PA and PNP) to eliminate the real nuisance (communist terrorists) of our community that often create havoc and offer deceptive manipulation that further led the people to extreme sufferings," Villanueva said.

To address the incident, he said the Army and the PNP have created a special investigating body that would determine the gaps and lapses in the operation.

At about 9:20 a.m. on Monday, elements of the 1st Platoon, 805th Company, Regional Mobile Force Battalion 8 of the PNP and troops of the 87th Infantry Battalion had a misencounter as they were patrolling Sitio Lonoy, Barangay San Roque, Sta. Rita, Samar. Six junior police officers died while nine others were wounded in the incident. (PNA)

Source: Philippines News Agency

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