2 ISIS-linked armed men slain in Tacurong
TACURONG CITY – Police here killed two alleged members of an Islamic State (IS)-inspired group following a shootout with law enforcers manning a checkpoint along the national highway here on Monday morning.
Chief Supt. Eliseo Tam Rasco, police regional director for Region 12, said the suspects were on board a gray multi-cab that evaded a police checkpoint in Isulan-Tacurong highway. The multicab quickly turned toward Kapingkong road and this caught the attention of police officers.
Rasco said before the multicab evaded a checkpoint in Isulan, two suspects armed with assault rifles fired at police officers of Regional Mobile Force Battalion manning a checkpoint at Barrio Dos, Tacurong City about 4 a.m.
This prompted the police to chase the gunmen until they were cornered at Kapingkong Road.
“They opened fire on our police officers who retaliated and neutralized the gunmen,” Rasco said.
Rasco said prior to the shootout, the Sultan Kudarat police office received information about an impending transport of improvised bomb in between Isulan, Sultan Kudarat and Tacurong City.
After the information was validated, police on checkpoints were alerted, Rasco added.
Seized from the slain suspects were one ISIS flag, one 9-mm pistol with PNP marks, one KG9 pistol, ammunition, and an improvised bomb and bomb components.
Supt. Aldrin Gonzales, speaking for PRO-12, said the IED was safely deactivated by Sultan Kudarat bomb experts.
The slain suspects remained unidentified but they are believed to be members of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) that pledge allegiance to the ISIS.
Two bombings rocked Isulan in August and September that left five dead and 49 others injured. The twin bombings were blamed on BIFF Abu Torayfe faction.
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