Tuesday, October 12, 2021

Sayyaf man surrenders after hiding for four years

ZAMBOANGA CITY – The Philippine military announced Tuesday the surrender of an Abu Sayyaf terrorist in the southern province of Tawi-Tawi after escaping a government campaign in Sulu province. 

Army Maj. Gen. Alfredo Rosario, Jr., chief of the Western Mindanao Command, said Maja Misal, whose father was killed by soldiers in fierce fighting in Sulu’s Patikul town in 2017, surrendered Monday to the military’s Joint Task Force Tawi-Tawi under Col. Romeo Racadio. 

The Western Mindanao Command released a photo of Abu Sayyaf terrorist Maja Misal who surrendered to the military in Tawi-Tawi province on October 11, 2021 after four years in hiding. 

Rosario said the 21-year old terrorist also yielded an M1 Carbine rifle and ammunition. He was the 4th Abu Sayyaf fighter who surrendered in Tawi-Tawi since early this year. 

Misal went into hiding after his father was killed and he eventually escaped to Tawi-Tawi until his surrender in the capital town of Bongao.

Rosario said Misal was also presented to local government leaders and police officials at the headquarters of the 2nd Marine Brigade where he was briefed about the government programs for Abu Sayyaf surenderees. 

He said Misal was given food aid – a sack or rice, drinking water and a box of assorted goods while authorities are finalizing assistance to the former fighter of the pro-Islamic State Abu Sayyaf group. 

“He is still young and a brighter tomorrow awaits him. We are here to assist him in his reintegration into mainstream society. We want to work for peace without the use of arms and prevent bloodshed, and, in this light, we are encouraging other Abu Sayyaf bandits, as Filipinos, to lay down their arms and return to the folds of the law. We continue to work closely with the local government and our partners to turn the strongholds of the Abu Sayyaf into a peaceful community,” Rosario said. 

Hundreds of Abu Sayyaf fighters had surrendered the past years in Sulu, Tawi-Tawi and Basilan provinces and are now living peacefully with their families after receiving livelihood assistance from the national and provincial governments. (Mindanao Examiner)

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