12 BIFF gunmen killed in 2-day offensive in Maguindanao
Published: 9:49 p.m., July 10, 2018 | Updated: 11:27 p.m., July 11, 2018
CAMP SIONGCO, Maguindanao — At least 12 gunmen from the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) were killed in air and ground assaults by government troops in Maguindanao province on Sunday and Monday, a military official said.
Capt. Arvin John Encinas, spokesperson for the Army’s 6th Infantry Division (6ID), said government soldiers recovered the bodies of the slain BIFF men in the subvillages of Pandan, Mungkas and Bulod after a two-day offensive at Barangay Malingao in Shariff Saydona town.
He said at least 50 BIFF men were seen in the village.
Encinas identified the slain BIFF members as Baser Alon, Nurdin Kalun, Kemi Jainudin, Wahed Anuwar, Bensar Ali, Arapat Gemal, Bedo Gamadil, Wari Brahim, Bakar Seral and Tato Menta.
Two others were yet to be identified as of Wednesday.
Encinas said their reports indicated that nine other rebels were wounded.
“Our troops on the ground are continuously gaining advantage over BIFF bandits in the ‘SPMS box’ in the past seven days of intensified military operation,” said Brig. Gen. Cirilito Sobejana, 6ID commander.
The military refers to the towns of Salibo, Pagatin (Datu Saudi), Mamasapano and Shariff Aguak as the “SPMS box.”
Encinas said government troops remained on alert after BIFF gunmen tried to set off improvised bombs along roads leading to the clash site.
“We ask civilians to help our troops by providing information that will lead to the arrest … of militant leaders in their [areas],” Encinas said.
The military said 35 BIFF rebels had been killed in offensives in Maguindanao this month.
Sobejana said three soldiers were killed while 19 others were wounded since the operations against BIFF, a breakaway group of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, started in late May.
/ee /pdi /atm
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.