The Abu Sayyaf Group lost a number of its members after a series of civilian tipped-off armed confrontations with the AFP in Sulu. The first encounter was in So. Itum, Brgy Kabbuntakas, Patikul, Sulu at 2:40 pm November 23, while the second was in So. Huton Mahablo, Brgy. Silangkan in the municipality of Indanan at 3:30 pm November 24.
One ASG member identified as certain “Jailade” was killed while four other ASG members were reportedly wounded during the first encounter that lasted for 45 minutes. Five soldiers from 32nd Infantry Battalion were slightly wounded during the firefight.
All the five wounded soldiers were immediately brought to the Camp Bautista Station Hospital for medical treatment and were sent back to their battalion headquarters at 10 am today after an overnight stay at the said military hospital.
The second encounter was between the 2nd Special Forces Battalion and the ASG in Indanan, Sulu which resulted in five ASG members killed with three firearms recovered. Among the ASG members killed was Sibih Pisih, a subgroup leader of the ASG under Radullan Sahiron and a certain Roger Sajih.
Accordingly, Sibih Pisih is one of the original subgroup leaders of the ASG before the group was split into Sahiron and Sawadjaan Group. He in-charge of the ASG’s off the water kidnappings in the boundaries of Tawi-tawi and Sabah, Malaysia. He has a pending warrant of arrest for the massacre of 22 civilians in Talipao Sulu, sometime 2014.
One M653 Rifle, one Barret Sniper Rifle, and one Cal.45 Pistol were recovered during the 30-minute firefight. However, two Special Forces personnel were slightly wounded during the armed encounter and are now at the military hospital in Jolo, Sulu for appropriate medical treatment.
All the cadavers of ASG members are now for forensic investigation of whom three are yet to be identified as of this report.
Col Ignatius Patrimonio, Commander of 1102nd Infantry Brigade said “The ASG has no safe place here in Sulu as the people themselves are now very active in reporting the ASG presence in their communities. They may evade government forces occasionally, but they will surely ran-out of luck as they are continuously losing their traditional lairs here in Sulu.”
Major General Corleto Vinluan Jr, Commander of the JTF Sulu congratulated his troops for the series of successful combat operations against the ASG bandits. He reiterated his warning “We will hunt you down one-by-one if you will not surrender. We will not stop until all of you are brought to justice”. PHILIPPINE ARMY