Thirteen New People’s Army (NPA) members were killed in separate clashes in southern and northern Luzon Saturday morning, military officials said.

Eleven rebels, including ranking NPA leader Armando Albarillo, were killed in a clash in San Narciso, Quezon, Col. Eduardo Año commander of the Army’s 201st Brigade, based in Calauag, said.

The clash occurred as soldiers were scouring Sitio Makuyokuyo, Brgy. White Cliff, around 11:10 a.m.

“We received an information last night (Friday) from the residents of Brgy. White Cliff that a group of NPA consolidated in the area to prepare for an ambush targeting Army and police troops participating in a project of Gov. (David) Suarez. Nag-jump off ang tropa kaninang madaling araw at na-encounter nila yung mga NPA,” Año said.

Albarillo was the NPA’s commander in Bondoc Peninsula, the cradle of the rebel movement in Quezon, and secretary of the Sangay sa Platun Berto, according to the military official.

“This is a major decisive blow against the NPA in Quezon. Talagang bagsak na sila dito,” Año said, adding that he aims to make the province “NPA-free” by the end of 2012.

A soldier, identified only as Pfc. Badulid was slightly wounded on his arm during the clash. Troops recovered from the slain rebels five M16 rifles, M203 and M79 grenade launchers, and a shotgun.

Earlier in the day, two rebels were killed and five more were captured in another clash with troops in Botolan, Zambales.

Soldiers are still trying to identify the slain while Lito Collado alias Warry, one of those captured, was brought to the Zambales Provincial Hospital due to a bullet wound on his left leg, Lt. Col. Michael Samson, commander of the Army’s 24th Infantry Battalion, said.

The clash erupted around 5:30 a.m., when members of the 24th IB’s Charlie Company were scouring Sitio Dinapil, Brgy. Mambog.

Soldiers were sent to the area after a resident told the military that rebels were collecting money and food from civilians there, Samson said.

About 12 rebels engaged the troops in a 20-minute firefight before fleeing, he said.

Recovered from the scene were two M16 rifles, two M14 rifles, a shotgun, grenade, two grenade rifle ammunition, subversive documents, and personal belongings. (John Roson)

– end –