5 Sayyafs killed in fierce clashes in Southern Philippines
ZAMBOANGA CITY – Marines clashed with Abu Sayyaf rebels on Tuesday and killing 5 of them on Capual Island off Sulu province in southern Philippines, officials said.
Officials said soldiers also captured one rebel and recovered at least 8 automatic rifles in the village called Talok Talok.
Troops were also sent to the area to pursue about 3 dozen rebels under Abu Sayyaf sub-leader Alhabsy Misaya who managed to flee from the fighting, according to army Captain Jo-ann Petinglay, a spokeswoman for the Western Mindanao Command.
“We have recovered the bodies of the slain Abu Sayyaf members and captured one of them alive. The operations are continuing in the area,” she said.
Petinglay said the fighting lasted about 20 minutes and that civilians tipped off the military on the presence of the Abu Sayyaf on the island. “There are no casualties on our side,” she said.
Troops were also searching the island for kidnapped sailors that the Abu Sayyaf had taken from Sabah in Malaysia last year. “The military continues tom intensify the conduct of focused operations against the Abu Sayyaf in line with the no-let up campaign of President Duterte against kidnappings and other atrocities by the terrorist group,” Petinglay said.
Major General Carlito Galvez, the regional military chief, thanked the citizens and local government for their support to the armed forces and assured officials that soldiers will uphold human rights in the campaign against the Abu Sayyaf.
“This operational success manifests the commitment of the Armed Forces of the Philippines in fulfilling its mandate of bringing internal peace and security, and rest assured that we will continue to abide by the rules of engagement and contain the Abu Sayyaf group with the assistance of the local government and the community,” Galvez said.
Just recently, government soldiers arrested 2 men who were allegedly caught with hand grenades following a firefight with Abu Sayyaf rebels under Misaya in village of Kan Bulak in Sulu’s Luuk town. (Mindanao Examiner)