ZAMBOANGA CITY (MindaNews/01 November) – Government troops captured another suspected Abu Sayyaf camp following a firefight Saturday in Patikul, Sulu, a military official said.
The camp was the fourth to fall since last month after government troops launched pursuit operations against the Abu Sayyaf bandits, who are believed to be holding at least 10 more hostages.
Rear Admiral Raynaldo Yoma, Joint Task Force ZamBaSulTa (Zamboanga-Basilan-Sulu-Tawi-Tawi) commander, said the firefight erupted at around 7:20 a.m. Saturday after government troops chanced upon a group of Abu Sayyaf bandits in Barangay Bungkaong.
Yoma said the firefight lasted for about five minutes, with the Abu Sayyaf bandits abandoning their camp and withdrawing to the hintherlands.
No one from the Army’s 35th Infantry Battalion (IB) was reported killed or injured.
Yoma said the troops recovered during the clearing operation a combat boots, a poncho (coat), a hammock and a military pants.
Government troops have captured three Abu Sayyaf camps last month in Patikul town.
One of the camps has 47 bunkers and was captured by troops from the Army’s 32nd IB in Barangay Buhanginan.
The two other camps were captured by troops from the 35th IB in Barangay Kabuntakas.
One of the captured camps in Barangay Kabuntakas can accommodate 100 people while the other serves as a security outpost with a 10-person capacity. (MindaNews)