Manila: Philippine troops clashed with around 20 suspected left-wing rebels in the central Philippines, killing four insurgents, a military spokesperson said on Thursday.
Colonel Jorry Baclor said the encounter occurred Wednesday on the outskirts of a city in Negros Occidental province, adding that troops recovered six firearms, including two M16 rifles, two M203 grenade launchers, and two AK47 rifles.
The suspected rebels are believed to be members of the New People’s Army (NPA). The NPA rebels have been fighting against the government since 1969, concentrating their attacks in rural areas and small-scale skirmishes with the military.
Military data showed that the NPA is estimated to have 2,000 members, significantly lower than its peak strength in the 1980s.