4 Killed In Fierce Fighting In Jolo Island In South RP

August 8, 2007 at 1:09 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

ZAMBOANGA CITY, Philippines (Mindanao Examiner / 08 Aug) – Three Abu Sayyaf militants and a government soldier were killed in fierce fighting Wednesday morning in the southern Philippine island of Jolo, a military commander said.

Army Major General Ruben Rafael said five more soldiers were wounded in the fighting in the village of Lanao Dakula near Parang town.

He said troops clashed with about 70 Abu Sayyaf gunmen under Radullan Sahiron, wanted by both Manila and Washington for the spate of kidnappings of foreigners and terrorism in the troubled south.

“We have recovered the three bodies of the terrorists and several high-powered weapons, including a 90mm recoilless rifle and munitions left behind by the Abu Sayyaf,” he said.

Troops stormed a terrorist hideout in the hinterland village and sparking daylong clashes. Security forces also clashed Tuesday with the Abu Sayyaf in Jolo island.

Army Major Eugene Batara, a spokesman for the Western Mindanao Command in Zamboanga City, said sporadic clashes were reported Tuesday afternoon in the village of Sampunay, but there were no immediate reports of enemy casualties.

“There could be new Abu Sayyaf casualties. Fighting is going on,” he told the Mindanao Examiner.

The Abu Sayyaf originally was fighting for a strict Islamic state, but the group resorted to banditry and terrorism after its chieftain Abubakar Abdurajak Janjalani, a Libyan-trained firebrand, was killed by policemen in Basilan island in 1998.

His younger brother Khadaffy Janjalani, who took over the Abu Sayyaf group, was himself killed in a battle with U.S.-backed Filipino troops in Jolo island in September 2006.

Janjalani was responsible for the kidnapping and murder of two Americans in the southern Philippines. (Mindanao Examiner)

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