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Saturday, December 24, 2016

Rebels linked to IS, block Philippine highway

COTABATO CITY – Moro rebels have mocked police and military authorities on Saturday after they held several cargo trucks on Saturday and used them as blockade on a highway in Maguindanao province in southern Philippines and fled the area before security forces could arrive.
The daring action, blamed by the military to the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters, was meant to shame authorities and clearly showed how vulnerable the province was from such assault from a group of around 200 members who pledged allegiance to the Islamic State and other local jihadists.
Police and military said the rebels managed to block the highway in Guindulungan town which links several municipalities. There were no reports of casualties or injuries and the drivers of the trucks were unharmed by rebels.
It was not immediately known why security forces failed to detect the rebels. The 6th Infantry Division and the military’s Western Mindanao Command did not issue any statement, but the BIFF has been fighting for a separate Islamic state for many years now since its formation by former leaders of the larger Moro Islamic Liberation Front which signed an interim peace deal with Manila in 2014. (Mindanao Examiner)

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