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4 dead in clashes between soldiers and leftist rebels in Davao

(philstar.com) Updated November 16, 2009 08:01 PM

DAVAO, Philippines (Xinhua) - A government troop and three leftist guerrillas were killed in separate clashes over the weekend in the restive southern Philippines, a military official said on Monday.

Soldiers belonging to the Army's 103rd Division Reconnaissance Company encountered around 40 New Peoples Army on Sunday in the village of Salvacion, Mawab township in Davao del Norte province, regional military spokesperson Maj. Randolph Cabangbang told reporters.

A soldier named Private Joevert Camacho and a young guerrilla fighter were killed in the exchange of gunfire.

Lt. Jersom Butt, a commander of Special Forces, said two soldiers were also wounded.

A day before the incident, two leftist rebels died in an encounter with authorities in the nearby township of New Corella.

The NPA, the armed wing of the Communist Party of the Philippines, has been waging a guerrilla campaign in the countryside for four decades.

Military estimates placed the NPA strength at more than 5,000 men scattered in more than 60 guerrilla fronts throughout the country.
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