In line with the observance of the yuletide season, Philippine National Police Chief Director General Ricardo A. Marquez, declares the Suspension of Offensive Police Operations (SOPO) against the New People’s Army (NPA) nationwide effective 12:00 midnight of December 23, 2015 to 12:00 midnight of January 1, 2016.
As part of the yearly tradition, the SOPO is observed and respected by all units and personnel of the PNP that refrain the troops from initiating offensive police operations against the NPA.
However, SOPO does not cover normal law enforcement operations including the service of Warrants of Arrest.
Recognizing the inherent right to self-defense, all units still remain on-guard and maintain a high state of operational readiness to respond to any hostile actions.
According to the PNP Chief, extra precautionary and preemptive measures must be strictly observed to avoid NPA attacks on vital installations and police stations like the incident in Barangay New Eden, Pangantucan, Bukidnon on December 12, 2015 where personnel from Pangantucan Municipal Police Station were ambushed while responding.
“So as not to jeopardize the spirit of the Presidential Directive, however, all police units must exercise caution and restraint in the conduct of movements and activities which may be viewed as provocative acts against the NPA” PDG Marquez added.
The PNP will still continue to conduct active defensive measures such as security patrols to protect all PNP camps, stations, vital installations and civilian communities; route security, and strengthening of defensive positions.
Previously, PNP units also conducted gun muzzle taping, in line with the intensified efforts of the PNP against illegal discharge of firearms this holiday season.(PNP-PIO)