CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY (MindaNews/11 April) — Police and Army units on Tuesday afternoon started searching hospitals in four provinces and five cities in Northern Mindanao for suspected Abu Sayyaf members who may have survived the clash in Bohol province earlier on the same day.
Philippine National Police (PNP) Region 10 spokesperson Supt. Lemuel Gonda said security forces are carefully monitoring hospitals ans clinics just in case some of the bandits were able to escape Inabanga town in Bohol.
He said the entire PNP regional command and the 403rd Infantry Brigade were on full alert after receiving reports of the clash between the Abu Sayyaf bandits and government troops in Inabanga.
“We are monitoring any movements here in case some of the bandits were able to escape,” he said.
The clash in Sitio Ilaya, Barangay Napo, Inabanga town left three three soldiers dead.
Five bandits were also reported dead, according to a report reaching the PNP Region 10.
A soldier identified as Corporal Porlas and a policeman identified as PO2 Nazareno were wounded.
The dead soldiers were identified as 2Lt Saldua, Sgt Duero and Cpl Cahaban.
The report said five bodies of the bandits were recovered along with three M16 and a M4 assault rifles, and several improvised explosive devices.
Citing the report, Gonda said ten bandits on three motorized boats arrived at the river of Inabanga on Tuesday night.
He said the Philippine Air Force staged a bombing sortie in Ilaya.
Bohol, an island in Central Visayas, is a famed tourist destination. Among its attractions are the Chocolate Hills, Panglao Beach and Spanish-era churches.
The Abu Sayyaf is known to target foreign tourists for its kidnap-for-ransom activities. (Froilan Gallardo/MindaNews)