Sunday, June 14, 2020

1 BIFF member killed, 5 others arrested in NoCot clash

From the Philippine News Agency (Jun 14, 2020): 1 BIFF member killed, 5 others arrested in NoCot clash (By Noel Punzalan)

Google map of Midsayap, North Cotabato

A combatant of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) was killed while five others were arrested following a clash with military troopers in Midsayap, North Cotabato on Saturday.

Maj. Gen. Diosdado Carreon, Army’s 6th Infantry Division (6ID) commander, said they are still trying to determine the identity of the slain terrorist, while one of the five arrested was identified only as a certain Maguindale, an alleged member of the Daesh-inspired BIFF-Bungos faction.

The group of Imam Bungos is linked to a series of bombing incidents in Central Mindanao over the past several years.

“The wounded Maguindale was cornered near a quarantine checkpoint while apparently on the way to a hospital,” Carreon said in an interview by reporters here on Sunday.

He said a firefight erupted after BIFF terrorists attacked early Saturday members of the Army’s 34th Infantry Battalion (34IB) in remote Barangay Lomopog in Midsayap.

“The soldiers were responding to reports about the presence of gunmen in Lomopog village when fired upon by the BIFF, triggering a 30-minute running gun battle,” Carreon said.

Four of the terrorists yielded with their firearms after seeing one of their comrades killed, while soldiers chased and caught up with the escaping Maguindale in nearby Barangay Olandang of the same municipality.

Carreon said military clearing operations against the BIFF are still underway in Barangay Lomopog and the near environs.

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