Scout ranger killed, another wounded in Basilan ambush
ZAMBOANGA CITY, Zamboanga del Sur, Philippines — Unidentified armed men ambushed two scout rangers on motorcycle in Sumisip town, Basilan province on Tuesday morning, killing one and wounding the other.
The incident happened in Barangay Cabengbeng at around 8:55 a.m., according to a military report.
Sumisip Mayor Adnan Hataman said investigators could not yet ascertain if the perpetrators were members of the bandit group Abu Sayyaf.
However, Hataman said military officers told him they already knew the attackers.
Aboard a motorcycle on Tuesday, Technical Sgt. Richard De Jesus and Staff Sgt. Robby Balbuena of the 4th Scout Ranger Company went to the 5th Scout Ranger Battalion in Sitio Camalig in Barangay Bohe Pahu in Ungkaya Pukan town to secure some supplies.
When they reached Cabengbeng, unidentified armed men riding in tandem sprayed them with bullets.
One soldier died on the spot while the other was brought to the Lamitan District Hospital for immediate medical attention.
The attack, according to Hataman, happened about 10 kilometers from the town hall in Barangay Guiong.
Abu Sayyaf gunman killed
Meanwhile, in another development, a suspected Abu Sayyaf gunman was killed in Barangay Kabbon Takas of Patikul town, Sulu province in a clash on Monday morning.
Maj. Gen. Ignatius Patrimonio, commander of the Joint Task Force Sulu, identified the slain bandit as Rhudymar Habib Jihiran, also known as Gulam.
Patrimonio said two soldiers were also wounded in the armed encounter with the group of Abu Sayyaf sub-leader Mudzrimar Sawadjaan also known as Mundi.
Sensing the superior firepower of the government forces, the bandits withdrew and in the process faced fresh troops sent as reinforcement, sparking another gunfight, Patrimonio added.
An M14 rifle was recovered from Gulam. Also recovered were a bandoleer with seven loaded magazines, an analog phone, and three backpacks loaded with assorted items and personal belongings.
Patrimonio said the two wounded soldiers were recuperating at the Kuta Heneral Teodulfo Bautista station hospital in Jolo town.