BUTUAN CITY, Philippines, March 29 (UPI) -- Communist New People's Army members attacked government troops securing a Holy Week religious ritual in Butuan City, authorities in the Philippines said.
The attack on the Good Friday ceremony marking the Stations of the Cross resulted in the death of one member of the Civilian Armed Forces Geographical Unit. It occurred on the 44th anniversary of the New People's Army, the armed wing of the Communist Party in the Philippines, GMA News reported.
Lt. Joe Patrick Martinez, commander of the Philippine army's 42nd Civil Military Operations Company, said the morning ceremony was attended by thousands of people.
"These NPAs disrespected the solemnity of the Stations of the Cross," the Rev. Joesilo Amalla of the city's St. Joseph Cathedral said. "They don't know when to stop fighting."