6 BIFFs, 1 soldier killed in Maguindanao clash

SHARIFF AGUAK, Maguindanao (MindaNews / 26 July) – Six rebels and a soldier were killed while 14 others were wounded in a clash in Maguindanao Tuesday, the Army said.

Col. Lito Sobejana, commander of the 601st Infantry Brigade, said fierce firefight erupted at 4:30 a.m. in the village of Pamalian, Shariff Saydona, Maguindanao between Army soldiers belonging to the 57th and 34th Infantry Battalions and members of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF).

Intense fighting continued until noon when the military had to use its air assets to allow retrieval of the fatality and wounded government combatants.

Ten BIFF rebels and four soldiers were wounded during the fighting that slowed down after noontime but intensified again in the afternoon, the military said.

Sobejana said sporadic fighting was still going on as of 3 p.m.

The BIFF, numbering about a hundred, was led by Kagi Karialan who assumed leadership of the outlawed group, Sobejana said.

Members of the International Monitoring Team and the government and Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) ceasefire committees have entered the conflict area to ensure no misencounter will take place between government forces and MILF rebels. (Ferdinandh Cabrera / MindaNews)