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Friday, March 1, 2024

Philippine troops kill 11 Islamic militants in bloody anti-insurgency offensive

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MANILA, Philippines — Philippine troops, backed by airstrikes and artillery fireplace, killed 11 suspected Islamic militants close to a hinterland village within the nation’s south, authorities stated Saturday, in one of many army’s bloodiest anti-insurgency offensives this 12 months.

The army launched the offensive Friday after receiving intelligence concerning the whereabouts of suspected leaders and armed followers of the Dawla Islamiyah and the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters, or the BIFF, teams close to the village of Tuwayan in southern Datu Hofer city in Maguindanao province, army officers stated.

Military Maj. Saber Balogan, a regional army official, stated authorities forces recovered 11 our bodies of suspected militants after greater than three hours of preventing.

Troops additionally recovered Seven M16 and M14 assault rifles, rocket-propelled grenades and 5 do-it-yourself bombs from the scene, he stated, including that there have been no army casualties.

The Related Press noticed a confidential preliminary authorities report concerning the army operation, which acknowledged that two Philippine air drive fighter planes dropped eight 500-pound bombs within the hinterland areas the place the militants had been noticed. Two army helicopters additional focused the militants.

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Military troops had been deployed after to the battle scene, army officers stated.

This got here after 13 armed militants belonging to the Dawla Islamiyah surrendered with their firearms to the army within the south, Maj. Gen. Alex Rillera, a regional army commander stated.

It was not instantly clear if the militants supplied info that helped the army determine to launch Friday’s assault.

“That is the nice aspect of popping out and laying down your weapons; Now you can stay peacefully along with your family members,” Rillera advised the militants, who surrendered in a ceremony on Thursday in South Cotabato province adjoining to Maguindanao province, the place the army offensive was carried out the next day.

After many years of debilitating armed hostilities, the Philippine authorities signed a 2014 peace pact with the biggest Muslim separatist group, the Moro Islamic Liberation Entrance, within the south of the largely Catholic nation. That significantly eased armed insurgency-related clashes and violence within the south.

Nevertheless, smaller Muslim separatist teams have continued to wage assaults, together with sporadic bombings in public areas, and at occasions concentrating on companies in return for “safety cash” from the house owners, the army beforehand stated.

The BIFF, which the army operation focused Friday, consists of militants who defected from the Moro Islamic Liberation Entrance following the peace talks with the federal government. It additional cut up into just a few factions, from which some aligned themselves with the Islamic State group.

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