Sayyaf kills 6 soldiers in Basilan


ZAMBOANGA CITY: Abu Sayyaf militants have killed six infantry soldiers, including an officer, in fierce clashes on Sunday in the restive province of Basilan in the Muslim autonomous region in southern Philippines, officials said.

The fighting, according to the officials, erupted in the village of Libug in Sumisip town, a known Abu Sayyaf stronghold in the province. The soldiers were patrolling the village when they engaged about 20 militants, sparking a running gunbattle that killed the soldiers belonging to the 64th Infantry Battalion.

Marine Capt. Maria Rowena Muyuela, a spokesman for the Western Mindanao Command, said the slain soldiers were guarding a road project in the town. “They were part of team securing a development project there,” she added.

Mayuela said the intense fighting lasted some 45 minutes.

“Six soldiers, including a young second lieutenant, were proclaimed dead after 45 minutes of heavy exchange of fire,” she added.

But television reports quoted Philippine military spokesman Lt. Col. Harold Cabunoc as saying two officers were killed in the fighting, although their names were not made public until their families have been informed about the deaths.

Col. Rolando Bautista, commander of the 104th Infantry Brigade, has sent reinforcement to pursue the militants headed by Radzmi Jannatul.

“I will press criminal charges against these bandits who are harassing security forces protecting the workers of the 64-kilometer, Saudi [Fund for Development]-assisted road project,” he said.

Bautista was referring to the 135-kilometer Basilan Circumferential Road project launched by the Department of Public Works and Highways during the time of President Fidel Ramos in the 1990s that has not been finished. The military also helped construct the road project, which was financed through a concessional facility extended by Saudi Arabia.

The loan of 75 million Saudi riyals was extended in October 2005 to revive the project after being stalled for many years while the Philippine government provided a counterpart fund of P1.118 billion.

The circumferential road project is seen as a major infrastructure initiative to lift Basilan from poverty and bring prosperity to the province as part of the government’s campaign against local terrorism and lawlessness in the area, state media said.


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  1. Its too easy to suggest because you were not in the main front of the battle.every soldier wanted to end every war that they ever had.But actully but only the dead soldier sees the end of war.Philippine arm forces got the best soldiers and best how could they perform their duty if they are just following ordera.Orders from the
    higher in rank ..Believe me or not only the combatant feels the tru battle.

  2. I am sorry for the loss of our young soldiers in combat. Let us pause for a few minutes in prayer for their souls. then after this, let us send as many soldiers as we can afford in that province and conduct operations against the Abus. If we can not do it by ourselves let us be men enough to ask help from our allies. Maybe they have far better equipments of communication and gadgets in pinpointing where the ABUS are hiding.

  3. marlo… minsan magdahan dahan k rin s mga comment mo na mhihinang klase ang mga sundalo eh ikaw pla itong magaling bkit hnd ikaw ang pumunta don, magaling k lng magsalita hnd mo alam kung anong nangyari.. ginagawa ng mga sundalo ang mga trabaho nila ikaw bunganga lang magaling… instead you comment with harsh words use your tongue to inspire others…. pay respect to the loses..

  4. Press criminal charges? Hah? Hindi pa ba nalalaman ng gobyerno-Pilipinas sundalo at PNP na kapag kaharap ay ASG at “Lost Command”, ang labanan ay patay kung patay?

    At tahimik ata ang Malaysia para huwag ma-isip ng Kongreso-Pilipinas kung ano ang mangyayari sa law-and-order kapag BBL ay nakalusot.

  5. Everytime ASG attacks, a “complete set” is wiped-off…..enlisted men and their officer.

  6. Bakit parang mahinang klase itong mga sundalo na itinalaga para lipulin ang mga kriminal na yan. Parang mas magaling na tactician itong abu sayyaf.
    Ang liit na probinsiya ang basilan. Suyurin na lang. Mag create ng landing zones sa mga edges ng mga towns, one after the other. In about 6 months, ubos yan.

    • Minsan madali lang mag salita pero mahirap sa gawa. All the young soldiers assigned in the area are well trained and ready to fight. They are also well equip with military hardware for the combat mission. But the enemies are hiding everywhere and come out only to ambush their target victims with the motive only to hit and run. After having successfully ambushed and inflicted damaged, they would dissolve themselves into nowhere. So how the military would be able to eliminate them completely? Basilan is only an island as you may call her but the thick forest is hard to close with Military dragnet. The six months operation you are talking about is only in dream. Military operation has been in place since the time of President Marcos but the enemies are still in the area. Military success in the operation would happen only if you will be the one to lead, will you?