Marines capture Abu Sayyaf lair in Sulu
MANILA, Philippines—Government troops seized an Abu Sayyaf encampment in Sulu on Monday after a firefight that led to the rebel group abandoning the base, a Philippines Marines official said.
Captain Rowena Muyuela, Eastern Mindanao Command Spokesperson, said Marines took over the encampment which served as the lair of top Abu Sayyaf leader Radullan Sahiron.
“The seized camp is fortified with connecting trenches, well-established firing positions and hundreds of explosive improvised explosive devices placed in all approaches,” Brigadier General Martin Pinto, 2nd Marine Brigade Commander.
Sahiron is included in the Most Wanted list of the Federal Bureau of Investigation after abducting an American citizen in 1993.
Muyuela said that the Islamist group suffered an undetermined number of casualties and fatalities while only two Marines were slightly wounded.
“Our troops had to breach the enemy’s defenses and squeeze themselves to the complex terrain to be able to get close to the objective,” Pinto said.
Despite the ASG’s terrain advantage, the Marines held their ground and returned fire as they inched their way to the camp, clearing several enemy satellite camps.”
Government troops are still conducting clearing operations in the area, two days after the encounter.
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