Seven members of the Philippine National Police's elite Special Action Force (SAF) were killed while seven others were wounded in an ambush by communist New People's Army (NPA) rebels in Cagayan province Monday.
The incident occurred at 8:30 a.m. at Capagaran village in Allacapan town, approximately two kilometers away from the Allacapan Police Station, a report by the Cagayan provincial police said.
Cagayan Valley regional police head Chief Superintendent Rodrigo de Gracia cited sketchy initial reports indicating that the truck the SAF members were riding was damaged by an exploding land mine.
After the explosion, NPAs in the area allegedly opened fire on the SAF members, killing seven of them.
The government recently stopped pursuing formal talks with the NPA's political arm, the National Democratic Front, and is exploring alternate means of holding peace efforts.
On the other hand, Monday's encounter also came two days after seven Philippine Marines were killed in an encounter with the Abu Sayyaf bandit group in Patikul town in Sulu.
Seven Abu Sayyaf members were killed in the Sulu incident. — KBK, GMA News
Philippine economic growth in the first quarter slowed to a three-year low of 5.2 percent, well below forecasts, due to lethargic government spending and weak exports, officials said Thursday. "While growth in the private sector remains robust, the slower than programmed pace of public spending, particularly the decline in public construction, has slowed down the overall growth of the economy," Economic Planning Secretary Arsenio Balisacan told reporters. "Exports were the other source of the …