NPA Rebels Bomb Dole Plantation in Compostela Valley

New People’s Army (NPA) rebels bombed a banana plantation of Dole Philippines, Inc. in Maragusan town, Compostela Valley province on Saturday evening, the military said.

First Lieutenant Vergel Lacambra, public affairs officer of the Philippine Army’s 10th Infantry Division, said the rebels sneaked into the compound and detonated two IEDs (improvised explosive devices) at a bridge near the hangar around 11:30 in the evening.

No one was hurt in the incident but the bridge, which connects the Dole-Stanfilco office to the hangar, was slightly damaged due to the explosions.

One of the company’s Cessna planes, used in spraying insecticides to the plantation, also incurred minor damage after being hit by shrapnel.

Lacambra said the rebels were believed to be members of the NPA’s Front 72 operating in the area.

He said the rebels bombed the plantation after Dole officials refused to give in to their extortion demands.

Troops from the Army’s 25th Infantry Battalion were immediately dispatched to the explosion site to secure the area and conduct pursuit operation against the fleeing rebels, foiling the latter’s alleged plan of burning down the building and cutting the banana trees.