Four Abu Sayyaf camps were seized by government security forces during two-day clashes on the outskirts of Basilan province since Wednesday but the terrorists continued to put up a fight yesterday.
Lt. Col. Harold Cabunoc, Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Public Affairs Office chief, said that at around 1:15 p.m. yesterday an armored personnel carrier (APC) of reinforcement troops was hit by an improvised explosive device (IED) laid by Abu Sayyaf terrorists along Sitio Abatar, Barangay Baiwas, Sumisip.
No one was hurt during the attack but the APC was slightly damaged.
Cabunoc said that relentless pursuit operations are still ongoing against the Abu Sayyaf in the vicinities of Barangays Baiwas and Pamatsaken.
“Our troops are deliberate and careful in hunting down the Abu Sayyaf remnants because there are IEDs along their escape route,” Cabunoc said.
“So far, we have captured four ASG camps in barangays Baiwas and Pamatsaken,” he added.
Since Wednesday, Cabunoc said the government troops have already recovered five IEDs –two in the encounter sites and three along the Abu Sayyaf withdrawal route.
Cabunoc said that there was no government casualty during the clashes.
On the other hand, Cabunoc said that six Abu Sayyaf terrorists were killed –two of them identified, while six others were wounded so far.
“As of now, relentless operations are still ongoing against the Abu Sayyaf bandits but there was no recorded firefight today (Thursday) so far,” Cabunoc said.
The target ASG band, headed by sub-leader Radzmil Jannatul and Jahaivel Alamsirul, is responsible in the killing of Lt. Jun Corpuz, a member of the Philippine Military Academy Class of 2014, and five other soldiers during an ambush in Sumisip.
Cabunoc said that while Army troops, particularly those from the 104th Brigade, are leading the ground operations against the ASG while Marine forces were deployed to secure the ongoing
project. Basilan Circumferential Road