Reds torch construction equipment in Surigao

Suspected New People's Army guerrilas set fire to 4 backhoes and 2 bulldozers owned by a DOLE Philippines sub-contractor at the company’s plantation area in Guinhalinan village, Barobo Saturday evening.

Initial reports said fighter of the NPA Guerilla Front 14 swooped down on DOLE’s camp site and torched the vehicles at 7:30 p.m.

In his report to Major General Mario Chan, commander of the 4th Infantry Division, 401st Brigade commander Col. Augustus Tolentino said that the burning was related to DOLE’s refusal to give in to the extortion demands of the communist rebels.

“It has been a pattern for the New People’s Army to demand 'tong' from legitimate companies. Those who refused to give 'tong' to the NPA were given punishment such as liquidation of top management officers or burning of equipment like what the NPAs are doing to DOLE Philippines," Tolentino said.

“This is clearly an act of terrorism; indeed kidnap-for-ransom is what separates the NPAs from the Abu Sayyaf," he said. (

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