The Philippine military said it killed at least 7 BIFF rebels, including a commander, in a clash Sunday in Maguindanao province in the restive Muslim autonomous region in
Security officials said the fighting erupted in the towns of Datu Unsay and Shariff Saydona after troops caught up with two groups of BIFF gunmen. One soldier was reported killed in the clash in Datu Unsay.
Troops were battling the BIFF or Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters the past weeks now after the military ordered an all-out offensive against the small group it blamed for the spate of bombings and deadly attacks on soldiers in the region.
Officials said several more soldiers and rebels were wounded in the clashes. It was unknown if troops recovered any of the slain rebels, but most of the military reports were based on intelligence provided by villagers in those towns.
The BIFF has broken away with the larger Moro Islamic Liberation Front which signed a peace deal with
last year, and continues to fight for an independent Muslim state in Mindanao.