Three Abu Sayyaf Group terrorists were killed in a clash on Saturday in Sulu province with government troops belonging to the Joint Task Force Sulu (JTF Sulu) as the hunt went full blast for the remaining ASG bandits holding over a dozen foreign and Filipino hostages.
Soldiers of the 21st Infantry Battalion headed by Maj. Christopher Genzola engaged in a fierce hour-long firefight heavily armed ASG men under Almujer Yaddah at Sitio Darayan at the boundary of Barangay Danag and Barangay Buhanginan, in Patikul, Sulu.
One soldier was killed and 15 others were wounded.
During clearing operations, the government troops were able to recover from the encounter site one unidentified body.
“Our operating troops were also able to see the bandits dragging two of their companions who appeared to be already lifeless,” according to Brig. Gen. Cirilito Sobejana, JTF Sulu commander.
The Abu Sayyaf, which is still holding 16 foreigners and four other Filipinos, recently beheaded two Vietnamese sailors after their government and families failed to pay ransom.
“As we speak, skirmishes are still ongoing as our troops are going after the tracks of the withdrawing bandits,” Sobejana said.
All 15 wounded in action were safely evacuated and are being treated at the Camp Teudulo Bautista Hospital in Bus-Bus, Jolo, Sulu.
The body of the dead soldier was brought to the military mortuary at the JTF Sulu headquarters.
“The family of the fallen soldier will immediately be notified and will receive all compensations due to the family of a hero,” Sobejana said.