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New VisCom chief bares ‘operational thrust’

January 26, 2023 Christian D. Supnad 441 views

CAMP LAPULAPU, Cebu City – In his first command conference following his assumption, the newly installed Commander of the Visayas Command (VisCom), Lieutenant General Benedict M. Arevalo, conveyed his “operational thrust” to all Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) units under VisCom on Wednesday, January 25.

“Dismantle the remaining guerilla fronts in our joint operational area to include its vertical forces and the independent groups of the CPP-NPA (Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army). Towards this direction, we focus our resources, our energy, our time, and our efforts,” said Arevalo.

Public Information Officer Maj. Israel Galorio said during the conference that it was revealed that there were nine NPA guerilla fronts in the Visayas, six of which have already been “weakened” while three remain “active.”

Galorio pointed out that the “sustained” focused military operations of the government troops resulted in the “neutralization” of 135 identified communist terrorists in the region, 26 of whom hold “key positions.”

These are apart from the 164 firearms seized by the government troops, which drastically “degraded” the armed capability of the terrorist group.

Likewise, its ongoing “community support program” or CSP efforts, in partnership with the local Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (TF ELCAC), also gained its ground.

Around 13 provinces, 39 cities, 364 municipalities, and 8,479 barangays declared the CPP-NPA “persona non-grata” in their respective localities, leading to the declaration of VisCom to 319 barangays “cleared from NPA-infestation” in December last year.

Arevalo lauded all the units under VisCom for a “job well done” in the previous year, as he encouraged them to sustain the gains for 2023.

“I would like to congratulate everyone for a job well done in 2022, and I am very much positive that we can do as much or better for 2023,” said Arevalo.

VisCom’s Command Conference was conducted in a virtual teleconference format, with all 58 VisCom unit commanders present virtually.