The clashes happened in two barangays in Sumisip, Basilan on Saturday, May 6
MANILA, Philippines (May 8, 2017) — Four members of the Abu Sayyaf Group were killed on Saturday, May 6, according to the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP).
Captain Jo-ann Petinglay, spokesperson of the AFP Western Mindanao Command, said the 4 members of the terrorist group died in two related encounters in Sumisip, Basilan.
The first encounter happened 2 pm in Barangay Upper Bembengan while the second clash ensued around 9 pm in Barangay Cabcaban.
“Meron silang na-seize na isang temporary enemy encampment at may information na nakarating na out of those na naka-encounter nila, apat ‘yung napatay doon. Dalawa sa unang encounter, dalawa sa pangalawa,” Petinglay said.
(They seized a temporary enemy encampment and there was information that reached us that out of those involved in the encounter, 4 were killed. Two from the first encounter, another two from the second.)
The 4th Special Forces Battalion of the 18th Infantry Brigade under Joint Task Force Basilan led the fight against some 15 to 20 Abu Sayyaf members.
Petinglay said the terrorist leader involved in the clashes has yet to be identified.
In Mindanao, the AFP said over 23 members of the Abu Sayyaf surrendered in a span of a week amid intensified operations in Basilan and Sulu.
The military has promised to crush the Abu Sayyaf and the “ISIS-inspired” Maute Group by June 2017.