Two more Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) bandits were reported killed in a skirmish with government troops in Indanan, Sulu Sunday morning. The incident took place 6:45 a.m. when troopers from the 11th Scout Ranger Compan, receiving reports concerning the presence of armed ASG bandits, deployed a patrol surprising eight brigands, of which two were killed after a brief firefight.
Col. Rodrigo Gregorio, Joint Task Force Sulu spokesperson, said the body of one slain ASG was recovered along with a M-16 automatic rifle fitted with a M-203 grenade launcher and one improvised explosive device (IED).
The body of the remaining bandit was seen been carried deep into ASG territory, he added.
This brings to 38 the total number of ASG brigands killed since the intensified combat operations was launched in July which also wounded scores of members of the terrorist group.
Soldiers suffered 15 killed in action and 28 wounded in action since July.
Authorities believe that the ASG has splintered into small groups to evade soldiers and are planting IEDs to delay movements of government troops.
Joint Task Force Sulu commander Brig. Gen. Arnel dela Vega said the successful pursuit is a “result of the cooperation of the community against the ASG”.
He also condemned the use of IED by the ASG saying “IEDs maim and kill individuals regardless whether they are soldiers or civilians and the main losers are the innocent people in the community. The use of IED is not only against the law but it is outrightly evil and un-Islamic.”
“The focused military operation will continue until we deal a crippling blow against the ASG and rescue the remaining hostages,” Dela Vega concluded.
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