3 civilians injured in Abu Sayaff attack in Sulu
ZAMBOANGA CITY – Three civilians were wounded when heavily-armed Abu Sayyaf bandits swooped down on a populated community in Patikul, Sulu on Friday, authorities told the Inquirer by phone on Saturday.
Brig. Gen. Martin Pinto, commander of the Joint Task Force Sulu, said the bandits, “brandishing newly-acquired M203 grenade launchers,” strafed and fired rifle grenades at a cluster of houses near a Marine detachment in Barangay Bungkaong.
Senior Supt. Abraham Orbita, the Sulu police chief, identified the wounded civilians in the 1:30 p.m. attack as Alnajir Suhaili, Abdulmain Jamasali, and Milding Amil.
Orbita said it appeared the Abu Sayyaf’s target was the Marine soldiers manning the Bungkaong detachment.
He said based on reports reaching the police, the Marine soldiers engaged the bandits in a 50-minute firefight.
“We are verifying reports that three ASGs were wounded when the Marines returned fire to repulse the culprits,” Pinto said.
He said the three civilians, who suffered slight shrapnel injuries, had been rushed to a local hospital after having been administered first aid by soldiers.
Pinto said Abu Sayyaf bandits also harassed another detachment in Barangay Latih although no injuries were reported from the second incident.
“The ASG fired few shots and we didn’t respond,” he said.
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