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Triggered by sightings of armed men; Heightened alert in Guihulngan City

CEBU, Philippines – The Police Regional Office-7 has enforced a heightened alert status in Guihulngan City, Negros Oriental following the citing of armed men last Wednesday.

He said the action is part of vital lessons learned from the recently concluded Bohol crisis, when 12 Abu Sayyaf Group members entered the province but were thwarted especially due to the vigilance of residents. 

“Yes, especially this time na nagkaroon tayo ng experience sa Bohol. Ini-organize natin…hanggang purok.  Yun din sinasabi natin sa ibang bayan sa probinsya, na magmonitor at i-report kaagad” said Chief Superintendent Noli Taliño, PRO-7 director, when asked if security has been heightened in Guihulngan.

In a press conference yesterday, he said he has ordered the strict monitoring of vital installations, including the police station in the city.

Guihulngan is just 41 kilometers from the midwestern Cebu town of Dumanjug.

 Taliño said he already advised the chiefs of police of the close town to likewise monitor their jurisdictions.

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He, however declined to speculate to what group the allegedly two dozen men in pumpboats belonged.

“Those information ay bina-validate, kung saan nga galing, kung nag-pumpboat (nga), at umakyat nga ng bundok. I’m sure yung intelligence (assets) natin, they will consider all information, para ma-validate yung armed group na yan,” Taliño said.

He reiterated how important the community’s support is during an insurgency crisis or during terror attacks, not just in Central Visayas but in the whole country. He also said lawless elements will not thrive without assistance.

Taliño did not discount the possibility that the alleged sighting was related to last week’s travel advisory issued by the embassy of the United Kingdom, which urged its citizens to carefully consider their travel plans and exercise heightened vigilance. (FREEMAN)

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