ZAMBOANGA CITY -- An Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) bandit was killed while a high-powered firearm was recovered following a firefight in the hinterlands of Basilan province, military officials said Tuesday.
Col. Fernando Reyeg, the Army’s 104th Infantry Brigade commander, disclosed that the firefight occurred in Barangay Bohe Pahu, Ungkaya Pukan, Basilan at about 8:15 a.m. Tuesday.
Reyeg said the firefight ensued as troops of the Army’s 18th Infantry Battalion were on security operation when they chanced upon 10 ASG bandits led by Furudji Indama.
He said the firefight resulted in the death of an ASG bandit and the recovery of an M-16 Armalite rifle from the clash site.
Reyeg said that another firefight ensued between troops of the Army’s 3rd Scout Ranger Battalion and seven ASG bandits, also followers of Indama, at about 8:30 a.m. Tuesday.
He said the firefight lasted about five minutes after which the ASG bandits fled to the hinterlands. No casualty was reported.
The troops are tracking down the whereabouts of the ASG bandits who figured in the separate firefights.
“We commit to sustain our campaign against terrorism that derails peace and development in the area of operations. Hitherto, we work hard to crumble terrorists and to address security threats by intensifying our offensives and by involving stakeholders and the people of Mindanao,” said Lt. Gen. Arnel dela Vega, Western Mindanao Command (Westmincom) chief.
“All these operational accomplishments, we achieved because we had the support of our peace partners and, ultimately, the people of Mindanao,” he said.
“We will continue to protect the people with integrity, upholding their rights and interests, as their true servants,” he added. (PNA)