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6 ASG bandits, 3 soldiers killed in fresh Sulu clash

August 01, 2020 - Saturday 1:08 PM by PNA

Article Banner Image The remains of three of six Abu Sayyaf Group bandits killed in a firefight with government forces in Patikul, Sulu late Friday morning (July 31, 2020). Three soldiers were also killed in the encounter and another three were injured. PHOTO BY JOINT TASK FORCE SULU

ZAMBOANGA CITY – Six Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) bandits and three soldiers were killed while three others were wounded in a firefight in the Sulu town of Patikul, officials said Saturday.

Maj. Gen. Corleto Vinluan, Joint Task Force (JTF) Sulu commander, said the armed encounter in Barangay Taung, Patikul late Friday morning, broke out when an undetermined number of ASG bandits fired on government troops who were on a security operation.

The firefight resulted in the death of six ASG bandits and three soldiers, and the wounding of three other soldiers.

Vinluan said the troops have recovered the remains of three of the six slain ASG bandits while scouring the encounter site after the bandits fled to different directions.

He was unable to release the identities of the slain and wounded soldiers but said they belong to the Army’s 32nd Infantry Battalion.

“It is with deep sadness to report that three of our brave soldiers succumbed to death while defending the people of Sulu,” Vinluan said. “We seek for prayers for the eternal repose of their souls and for the speedy recovery of the wounded soldiers."

The identities of the slain ASG bandits have yet to BE determined, he said, adding the remains of other bandits were dragged by the fleeing bandits, based on eyewitness accounts.

The wounded soldiers were brought to the Camp General Teodulfo Bautista Station Hospital.

“The men and women of Westmincom (Western Mindanao Command) commiserates with the bereaved families of our fallen heroes who dedicated their lives serving their beloved country,” its chief, Lt. Gen. Cirilito Sobejana, said.

Sobejana said JTF Sulu’s forces are determined to pursue the fleeing enemies “in honor of their fallen comrades.” (PNA)