CAMP NAVARRO, Zamboanga City-- Government troops killed an Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) spotter in a law enforcement operation on Sunday afternoon in Tawi-Tawi.
Maj. Gen. Carlito Galvez Jr., Western Mindanao Command (Westmincom) chief, identified the slain ASG spotter as Al Abdullah.
Galvez said Abdullah was killed in a firefight shortly after 5 p.m. Sunday in the waters of Great Bakungan, Turtle Islands municipality.
The Turtle Islands municipality is located at the south-western tip of the country, at the edge of the international treaty limits separating the Philippines and Malaysia.
Galvez said the troops conducted maritime security patrol off the waters of Bakungan, Turtle Islands, after they received reports on the presence of kidnap-for-ransom-group (KFRG) members in the area.
Galvez said Abdullah, who was invited for questioning, has admitted that he owns the house where the suspected KFRG members stayed and identified them as Musub Baudin, Man Baudi and a certain Absar.
He said Abdullah asked permission to go home and was allowed by the troops.
However, he said Abdullah returned armed with an M-16 Armalite rifle and opened fire, thus, the firefight that resulted to his death.
Recovered from his possession was an M-16 Armalite rifle with several rounds of ammunition.
Galvez said the death of Abdullah is a big setback to the ASG "as we continue to intensify the conduct of law enforcement operations along with police and maximize intelligence monitoring to pre-empt kidnappings within our joint area of operations."
"Then again, it is proven that the direct involvement of the communities would put up pressure on the ASGs and constrict their movements. This will further help stop the group from creating havoc in the province," he added. (PNA)
Source: Philippines News Agency