Three soldiers were killed and an army officer was missing in a clash with communist rebels in the southern Philippines, a regional army spokesman said Saturday.
Lieutenant Colonel Kurt Decapia said the fighting erupted Friday when army special forces raided an encampment of communist rebels in Monkayo town in Compostela Valley province, 930 kilometres south of Manila, reported dpa.
Decapia said the soldiers succeeded in seizing the camp but the rebels launched a counter-attack a few hours later resulting in the killing of two soldiers and a pro-government militiaman.
One junior officer remained unaccounted for after the clash.
Decapia said more troops have been dispatched to the area to help locate and recover the missing officer.
Communist rebels have been fighting the government since the late 1960s, making the movement one of the longest-running leftist insurgencies in Asia.