Philippine soldiers, backed by helicopter gunships, have killed 15 left-wing rebels and captured another 12 after the rebels raided police stations on a southern island, an army spokesman said on Monday.
The New People's Army (NPA) rebels were part of a 30-member group that attacked two police outposts on Siargao island in the southern region of Mindanao and killed two police officers late on Saturday, officials said. Four officers were also injured.
Lt Col Romeo Brawner told reporters 15 rebels were killed and 12 were taken captive after gunbattles with the fleeing guerrillas on Sunday and early on Monday.
The Philippines has been battling communist rebels in 69 of 81 provinces across the country in a protracted conflict that has killed 40,000 people and stunted economic growth in one of Southeast Asia's poorest states.