Zamboanga City – Government troops discovered a site used by the Abu Sayyaf in making improvised explosive devices (IED) last Sunday, but did not find any bomb materials at the site.
Western Mindanao Command (WesMinCom) spokesperson Capt. Rowena Muyuela said elements of the Army’s 104th Infantry Brigade based in Basilan province stumbled on the site shortly before midnight last Sunday while in pursuit operations against the Abu Sayyaf in Tipo-Tipo town, Basilan.
Muyuela said the site is believed to be operated by an Abu Sayyaf leader identified as Furuji Indama.
Mayuela said the military offensive in Basilan is being supported by the Basilan local officials who called for the conduct of security and law enforcement operations against the ASG bandits after the recent killing of six soldiers in Sumisip, Basilan.
Muyuela said the military operations are aimed at ensuring the safety of the people from the atrocities committed by Indama’s group.
The group of Indama has been blamed for the recent killing of six soldiers who were providing security to workers of a Saudi-assisted road project in Sumisip.
The 11 mayors in the province drafted a manifesto urging the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) to neutralize the Abu Sayyaf militants, citing them as a “threat to peace, security, and development of our beloved province.”
Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) Gov. Mujiv Hataman handed the manifesto to AFP chief-of-staff Gen. Gregorio Pio Catapang Jr. during a meeting at WesMinCom last week.