BIFF rebels continue harassing military camps in Maguindanao
COTABATO, Philippines—Breakaway Moro guerillas are at it again.
Members of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) attacked on Tuesday night two Army detachments in Barangays Magaslong and Buayan in Datu Piang town in Maguindanao, sending villagers running for their lives.
The simultaneous attacks on the detachments of the 6th Division Reconnaisance Company were apparently retaliatory attacks by the BIFF after four of its members were killed in fighting following similar harassment four days ago, according to Col. Dickson Hermoso.
Hermoso, 6th Infantry Division spokesperson, said about 100 BIFF fighters crawled near the Army detachments in Barangays Magaslong and Buayan and fired assault rifles and anti-tank rockets on the bunkers of soldiers at past 10 p.m..
“We returned fire to drive them away, forcing them to retreat back to the marshland,” Hermoso said.
Hermoso said the same group last week repeatedly harassed soldiers of the 45th Infantry Battalion and the 6th ID’s 61st and 62nd Reconnaissance Companies guarding a former BIFF camp in Barangay Ganta, situated in the boundary of Datu Piang and Sharif Saydona towns.
The harassment, according to Hermoso, sent several families fleeing to safer barangays.
The humanitarian agency of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao has extended assistance to the displaced families.
“The lives of civilians are becoming more and more miserable because of these activities by the BIFF. Their acts scare civilians,” Hermoso said.
Abu Misry Mama, speaking for the BIFF, said the rebels will continue to harass military installations in Maguindanao as long as they are there.
The BIFF broke away from the Moro Islamic Liberation Front in 2008 over the issue of peace talks with the government.
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.