NPA rebels vowed to step up their attacks, as well and produce more explosive mines, defying a Presidential order.
Duterte visited the wake of three soldiers who were killed in rebel land mines this weekend – he then resumed his warning to the Communist rebels saying that “if another soldier dies from such weapons, he will call off the peace negotiations in Norway”.
On Monday Duterte repeated his threat in a speech at a military camp in Catbalogan City.
“I will not plead for it because I am the president,” he said. “Do not use that land mine. If I hear one more explosion, goodbye, and your peace panel, come home, don’t waste your money there and talk nonsense.”
He continued with, “These communists, if you’re listening, you have been at war with this government for 45 years. Do you want to fight another 45 years?”
The NPA released a statement and vowed to step up the making of remotely-detonated explosive devices and their use in guerrilla assaults.
The group contends that they do not use banned landmines, but make and use devices that are planted beforehand and detonate remotely.
The statement read “[the communist party] is not one to back down from threats of war by Duterte.”
“Waging people’s war has always been the path to strengthen the revolution and accumulate victories.”
NPA rebels have been under attack from the administration on their assaults on companies, farmers and business throughout numerous regions of Mindanao and the Visayas.
Just last week a banana plantation in Barobo, Surigao del Sur gave notice they will close down after repeated attacks of extortion and fire bombing by the group.
The closing will put 1,500 people out of work.
Duterte accused the group of becoming more militarised – earlier this year several military officials called the NPA a terrorist organisation.