SAGUIARAN, Lanao del Sur, Dec. 1 (PIA)-- Four Daesh-inspired extremists voluntarily surrendered on Monday at the 82nd Infantry Battalion (IB) Headquarters in Barangay Pawak, this municipality.
The rebel surrenderees who are from the municipality of Piagapo also turned over one rocket-propelled grenade, one M79 grenade launcher, one KG9 ,and one caliber 45 pistol.
During the interview, the former violent extremists revealed that they decided to surrender for fear of their demise knowing the stern orders from President Rodrigo Roa Duterte to quell all violent extremist activities in order for the government programs to have continuity of implementation.
Seeing government programs, the rebel surrenderees gained self-realization that violent extremism is totally wrong contrary to the true teachings of Islam which are peace and cooperation.
Alias Tarapas, one of the former rebels (FRs), participated in different encounters against government troops in Piagapo in the year 2017. He was also on the watchlist and went on lie-low status after he participated in Marawi siege wherein he managed to escape from the main battle area.
On the other hand, alias Jamal, Opaw, and Mocta, participated during the different encounters in Piagapo. They decided to go on lie low after a series of military efforts that resulted in the death of their recruiter Imam Dimacaling.
82nd IB commander LtCol. Rafman Altre lauded the efforts of the local officials and traditional leaders of the municipality in facilitating the peaceful surrender of the FRs.
Meanwhile, 103rd Infantry Brigade commander BGen. Jose Maria Cuerpo II, reiterated his call to the remaining members of the extremist group to surrender in order to prevent further escalation of violent extremism in the area. He further affirmed that the government has programs for the rebels who will return to the folds of the law.
1st Division commander MGen. Gene Ponio also conveyed appreciation to the troops for their efforts in contributing to the overall accomplishment of the division's mission and their professionalism in performing their mandates. (82IB/PIA-ICIC)