ZAMBOANGA CITY: Gunmen on Saturday ambushed a convoy of policemen and wounding 3 officers in the southern Filipino province of Sulu.
The policemen, headed by Senior Superintendent Abraham Orbita, the provincial commander, were traveling in Tanduh Bato village in Luuk town when they came under attack. The ambush sparked a 45-minute gunbattle, according to officials.
Orbita’s group was on a patrol and had inspected the wharf in Luuk when the attack occurred, but officials cannot say who were behind the ambush or its motive.
The fighting stopped after the ambushers fled even before police reinforcement could arrive. No individual or group claimed responsibility for the attack.
In May 2009, the police commander of Sulu, Senior Superintendent Julasirim Kasim and three of his aides and a brother, were killed in an ambushed staged by Abu Sayyaf group in Maimbung town.
Kasim had been in the front line in battling the Abu Sayyaf.
The Abu Sayyaf, which means “Bearer of the sword,” has been linked by authorities to the al-Qaeda and Jemaah Islamiya and is blamed on the spate of bombings in the southern Philippines. AL JACINTO