Clashes, military operations vs Abus kill 94
ZAMBOANGA CITY—At least 94 Abu Sayyaf bandits had been killed in clashes with government soldiers during the first six months of the year, a military official said. Capt. Jo-Ann Petinglay, spokesperson for the military’s Western Mindanao Command (Wesmincom), said the bandits died in clashes and military operations in Basilan, Sulu and Tawi-tawi provinces and parts of Zamboanga Peninsula. The soldiers, she said, arrested 66 suspected Abu Sayyaf members while 98 others surrendered to government forces from January to June. Petinglay said the military recovered 148 assorted firearms from the bandits. Lt. Gen. General Carlito Galvez Jr., Wesmincom commander, said soldiers continued to pursue the Abu Sayyaf. “[We] continue to work hard and integrate the efforts of our soldiers and our [local communities and officials] in [maintaining] the internal security in Mindanao and … defeating Abu Sayyaf,” Galvez said. —JULIE ALIPALA
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