2 killed in retribution attack in Basilan
ZAMBOANGA CITY, Zamboanga del Sur, Philippines — Two persons were killed in Basilan province on Friday, Nov. 20, in an attack that the military said was aimed at avenging the death of the suspected perpetrator’s kin.
Col. Domingo Gobway, commanding officer of the Army’s Joint Task Force Basilan, said a firefight happened in Barangay Langgong in Mohammad Ajul town on Friday.
One side was led by Gion Arasad, said to be a commander of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), while the other was led by Jobel and Halifa Abdullah who are suspected to be affiliated with the Abu Sayyaf /group.
Killed in the armed encounter were Ayad Munyong Taha, a councilor of Barangay Langgong who was identified with the Abdullah group, and Iyaji Jaafar, a follower of Arasad.
Arasad’s group allegedly stormed the village of the Abdullah clan retribution for the killing of the former’s son last Oct. 17.
Gobway said that Arasad’s son Radznan Ajid Addala, together with his friend, Adzlan Mujahad Hija, were riding on a motorcycle and each toting M16 assault rifles last Oct. 17 when they were ambushed in Tuburan town.
After killing the two, the six gunmen carted away their firearms. Arasad’s group later implicated the Abdullah group in the crime.
Gobway said Arasad apparently let a month of mourning pass before exacting revenge.
“Rido is part of their culture here, but we are doing our best to intervene to prevent further bloodshed,” Gobway said after meeting Hadji Dan Asnawi, a commander of the MILF’s Bangsamoro Islamic Armed Forces in Basilan.
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