From GMA News (Mar 20, 2019): Abu Sayyaf leader in Sipadan kidnappings, 1 other killed in Sulu clash —military
Two suspected Abu Sayyaf terrorists, including a leader in the 2000 Sipadan kidnappings, were killed in an encounter with the military in Sulu province, according to Mark Makalalad's report on Dobol B sa News TV on Wednesday.
Lieutenant Colonel Ralph de Mesa, acting spokesperson of Joint Task Force Sulu, identified one of the fatalities as Angah Adjih.
According to a Philippine Army news release, Adjih was one of the bandits who seized 21 hostages from the dive resort island of Sipadan, Malaysia, on April 23, 2000. The victims were taken to an Abu Sayyaf lair in Jolo, Sulu, and were eventually rescued following a major military offensive.
The other Abu Sayyaf fatality, on the other hand, was identified asd Sarih Edris, the Philippine Army said.
The encounter took place in a remote barangay in Talipao on Tuesday afternoon between Abu Sayyaf members and troops from the 2nd Special Forces Battalion who were conducting combat patrol.
Recovered from the area following the 10-minute encounter were two rifles and a grenade launcher.
Brigadier General Divino Rey Pabayo Jr., JTF Sulu commander, credited the military's successful operations against the Abu Sayyaf to the cooperation of residents in the area.
"The series of encounters in Sulu is a result of growing support of the civilians toward the AFP who are now tired of the atrocities committed by the ASG in their communities," Pabayo said.
"The Joint Task Force Sulu, together with the local populace, remain steadfast with our mandate of bringing lasting peace in this part of the country."