Police investigate spate of killings in Surigao: 10 dead PDF Print E-mail
Sunday, 03 May 2015 15:59

Police are investigating the spate of killings that claimed the lives of 10 people in a span of eight days since last week in the once quiet city of Surigao where communist rebels operate in the countryside.

Supt. Ruben delos Santos, Surigao City police chief, told MindaNews they are looking into the killings and trying to determine if they all are related and having the same perpetrators.

Most of the victims were shot dead, and police have not arrested any suspects.

The series of killings started on April 21 in the village of Mat-i, where a man who was shot to death by unidentified gunmen.

On the same day, another gun attack took place in the village of Quezon, where a 48-year-old man was shot several times by two unidentified assailants.

On April 22, one what shot and killed in the village of San Juan. The next day, a 26-year-old farmer was beaten to death by four armed men in the village of  Anomar.

Then on April 24, two men were shot by a lone gunman in the village of Cagniog, killing one and wounding another.

On April 28, a 57-year-old man was shot five times by three attackers in the village of Mapawa, Then in the evening, another one was shot and killed in Anomar by a lone gunman.

There were a few more fatal shooting incidents which MindaNews is still following up with the police.

Surigao City is the center of politics, commerce, banking, industry and education of the two provinces of Surigao del Norte and Surigao del Sur whose countryside is hotbed of communist insurgents.

The New People’s Army (NPA), the armed wing of the Communist Party of the Philippines, has been waging an insurgency since 1969 that has left tens of thousands of people dead. It reportedly has around 4,000 members in 69 of the country’s 81 provinces.

Philippine authorities have tagged the rebels as notorious extortionists and blamed them for harassing banana, pineapple and rubber plantations, as well as poultry farms and mining outfits.

Peace talks between the NPA and the government collapsed in February 2013 due to rebel demands that detained comrades be freed.