Focused military operations in Leyte
The 802nd IBde has used various ways to make it appear that it has ended the New People’s Army (NPA) in Leyte. It has launched successive focused military operations from March to April. Simultaneously, it has spread disinformation such as fake operations, encounters and surrenders.
The 78th IB mounted operations in at least 11 barrios in the towns of Mahaplag and Abuyog in Leyte, and Sogod and Bontoc in Southern Leyte. Soldiers also occupied Pandan, Maligaya, and Sta. Cruz in Mahapalag, Pinamanagan in Abuyog, Kahupian and Pancho Villa in Sogod, and Ulisihan in Bontoc under the Retooled Community Support Program (RCSP). They intimidated peasant leaders and summoned them to surrender in their camp. They closely monitored the farmers’ movements, even when going to their farms.
The soldiers put up irksome checkpoints along the highways of Hilongos, Mahaplag and Sogod under the guise of the campaign against Covid-19. They threatened to shoot anyone who are infected with the virus.
In the Third District of Leyte, more than 100 soldiers from the 93rd IB operated in the barangays of Monterico, San Vicente and Manlilinao in Ormoc, and Bulak in Matag-ob for more than a week. In other parts of Ormoc, AFP and PNP troops joined forces to launch combat operations in the barrios of Biliboy, Donghol, Mahayag, Boroc and Hugpat from the last week of February to the first week of March. They also put up checkpoints along the boundary of Ormoc and Kananga.
The soldiers serve as security forces for an ecotourism project in the area owned by the Leyte Rep. Vicente Veloso. The planned resort is set to encompass areas from Matag-ob to Merida and will displace residents.
The 802nd IBde also staged the fake surrender of residents in Carigara through the E-CLIP program. Earlier in February, the unit also boasted about the fake surrender of 262 “former rebels” in San Isidro and Calubian Brigade officials certainly pocketed a huge portion of the ₱6,258,000-aid supposedly intended for the “surrenderees.”