Philippine – 16 killed in Philippine army clash with Abu Sayyaf
Laaska News July 27, 2012
Philippine government forces and Al Qaeda-linked Muslim militants have fought again on the southern island of Basilan. Twelve army soldiers and 4 rebels were killed.
The military said that army troops attacked a mountain encampment of the Abu Sayyaf on Thursday morning. The battle left 8 government soldiers and 4 insurgents dead.
Later in the day, Abu Sayyaf fighters fired on an army post and ambushed reinforcement units of government forces. Four more government soldiers were killed in action.
Sporadic fighting continued in various parts of the island through Thursday night.
The military says their operation was aimed at dealing with the recent escalation of Abu Sayyaf’s activities. They have been extorting money from rubber planters and attacking plantations protected by army soldiers.
Violence continues on Basilan and other islands in the southern Philippines. This is despite the army’s offensive against Muslim insurgents with support from US Marines.
Casualties of 16 people are the year’s highest in a single day clash between government forces and insurgents.
Jul. 27, 2012