Sara all set to pursue peace talks with Reds

Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio is determined to push through with the local peace talks with the New People’s Army (NPA) after its liquidation unit killed a city police officer on Monday.

“It was unfortunate, but this drives me to continue the peace talks to avoid similar incidents in the future,” the city mayor said.

Duterte-Carpio bared there is an ongoing investigation to get the identity of the killers, but did not divulge details of the findings.

On Monday, PO3 Wilfredo Garol, a member of the Davao City Police Office (DCPO) assigned at the Intelligence Section of the Tugbok Police Station was shot dead by two members of the New People’s Army (NPA) hit squad in Barangay Valencia, Tugbok District, this city.

Garol conveyed his wife, a teacher in a school in Valencia, on board his motorcycle. On his way back, the two suspects flagged him and asked for a free ride. But when they reached Purok 5 at Sitio Luman, Valencia the gunmen shot Garol several times resulting to his death.

DCPO chief Sr. Supt. Alexander Tagum vowed that Garol’s death will be investigated thoroughly to identify those behind the treacherous killing.

His death, Tagum stressed, will not deter the police in their commitment to an intensified fight against all forms of domestic threats posed by communist rebels or criminals.

Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Chief of Staff Gen. Rey Leonardo Guerrero threw his full support to the localized peace talks although he cannot discount possible threats to the community.

“We cannot discount the fact that as your AFP, we need also to address the armed threats,” Guerrero said.

Meanwhile, newly-installed commander of the Eastern Mindanao Command (EastMinCom) recognized the localized peace talks between the city and NPA in Davao City as he welcomed the initiative of the Mayor Duterte-Carpio to resolve the insurgency problem peacefully.

Asked if his command is willing to pull out the military troops in remote areas as a confidence-building effort, Eastmincom commander Lt. Gen Benjamin Madrigal said, “This will depend on what will be the agreement between both parties.”

“We will have to consult our leaders who are actively engaged in the peace process, regarding this matter,” he said.

Madrigal said that peace dialogues should be talked within the community. (PNA)