Soldiers wounded in Sayyaf clash

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ZAMBOANGA CITY: More than a dozen soldiers were wounded in fierce clashes Friday with Abu Sayyaf rebels in Sulu province.

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A military intelligence report said the fighting erupted near the village of Danag in Patikul town after government troops raided an Abu Sayyaf lair.

It was not immediately known if there were rebels killed in the fighting, but sporadic clashes had been reported in several villages.

Those wounded in the clashes were identified as Lt. Col. Mario Jacinto, Sgts. Edgar
Pahunang, Henry Paguyo, Abdurahman Ladjahasan, Randy Rivera, Jul Amin Baridgi, Rey Saluag, Baguio Balansi, Bernard Rey Tamparon, and Anthony Remotin, Cpls. Jerahkim Cuello and Juverey Guia, Pfcs. Gleen Richard Ponse, Jojo Anlas and Pvt. Isagani Moracilla —all from the 10th Infantry Battalion (IB).

The Western Mindanao Command did not issue any statement about the fighting, which occurred just a day after security forces captured three Abu Sayyaf fighters —Jemar Asgari, 22; Alden Asmad, 29; and Dems Abtal, 29—in the village of Lower Sinumaan in Talipao town. The trio are believed to be behind the spate of killings of soldiers and policemen in Jolo town.

Last Tuesday, Abu Sayyaf rebels also killed two army intelligence soldiers—Cpls. Lamustre and Apiado—in broad daylight in the village of Igasan in Patikul town. Both soldiers were also members of the 10IB who were sent to the village of Taglibi to gather intelligence about the Abu Sayyaf and its hostages.

The bandits have threatened to kill their two Canadian hostages —John Ridsdel, 68, and Robert Hall, 50; and a Norwegian Kjartan Sekkingstad—who were kidnapped along with a Filipina, Maritess Flor, in September last year on Samal island in Davao del Norte province.

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  1. Abu Sayyaf Group
    Listed in Australia 14 November 2002, re-listed 5 November 2004, 3 November 2006, 1 November 2008, 29 October 2010 and 12 July 2013. This statement is based on publicly available information about the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG). To the Australian Government’s knowledge, this information is accurate and reliable and has been corroborated by classified information. Basis for listing a terrorist organisation … Division 102 of the Criminal Code provides that for an organisation to be listed as a terrorist organisation, the Attorney-General must be satisfied on reasonable grounds that the organisation: is directly or indirectly engaged in, preparing, planning, or assisting in or fostering the doing of a terrorist act (whether or not a terrorist act has occurred or will occur); or advocates the doing of a terrorist act (whether or not a terrorist act has occurred or will occur).

    Funding
    ASG views kidnap-for-ransom and extortion ventures as profitable operational tactics. Kidnappings, in particular, have been a trademark of ASG since its creation and represent the main funding mechanism for the group.These activities help support members’ livelihood and provide resources for ASG’s terrorist activities, including its capacity to oppose military operations of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP). ASG has also received funds from other Islamist terrorist organisations and enjoys support from elements of the local population of Jolo and Basilan. Terrorist activity of the organisation

    Kidnappings reliably attributed to ASG since its re‑listing by the Australian Government as a terrorist organisation on 29 October 2010 include: On 5 December 2011, Australian national Warren Richard Rodwell was abducted from his residence in Ipil, Mindanao. In a January 2013 proof-of-life video of Mr Rodwell uploaded to YouTube, his captors stated he was being held by members of Al-Harakat Al-Islamiyya (ASG) and that money gained from his kidnapping was to be used for future operations. Mr Rodwell was released by his captors in March 2013.