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Mario J. Mallari

8 self-proclaimed ISIS rebels slain in Sultan Kudarat clash

Friday, 27 November 2015 00:00 Published in Nation

At least eight members of a Muslim group, which identified itself with the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), were killed during a clash with government security forces in Sultan Kudarat province yesterday.

Maj. Filemon Tan Jr., spokesman for the military’s Western Mindanao Command (Wesmincom), said that combined elements of the 61st Marine Company and Marine-Special Operations Group clashed with the group at around 5:40 a.m. while on combat operation along Sitio Sinapingan, Barangay Butril in Palimbang town.
Tan said that the Marines, led by Lt. Col. Armando Custodio, engaged the group of Ansar Al Khalifa and Mohammad Jaafar Maguid in an intense firefight
The intense clash resulted in the killing of eight of the armed men, whose remains were recovered from the site.
Among those killed was Ibrahim Alih, alias Abu Fattah, supposedly an Indonesian national described by security officials as “high-value personality.”
Also seized were a homemade Barrett .50 caliber, an M16 rifle, one caliber .45 pistol, assorted improvised explosive device materials, Icon radios and five pieces of ISIS flag.
However, a reliable source said that the encountered armed men belong to the group called Ansurul Khilafah Philippines (AKP), a small group of self-proclaimed terrorists identifying themselves with the ISIS.
The source said that the AKP was the same group tagged as Khilafah Islamiyah Mindanao (KIM).
“AKP is the same group as the so-called KIM…the tag KIM came later from locals,” the source said.
KIM was among the first Muslim groups in the country that displayed the ISIS black flag.
Aside from KIM, the terrorist Abu Sayyaf Group has pledged allegiance with ISIS which is responsible in the recent high-profile terror attacks in Paris and Mali that killed more than 130 people.
Wesmincom chief Maj. Gen. Mayoralgo de la Cruz directed troops to conduct relentless military operation in Western Mindanao in compliance to the order of President Aquino to intensify campaign against the terrorist Abu Sayyaf Group following the reported beheading of Malaysian hostage Bernard Then in Sulu.

3 military facilities in Luzon eyed

Friday, 27 November 2015 00:00 Published in Nation

The Department of National Defense (DND) is eyeing three military facilities in Luzon as probable base of the brand new FA-50 lead-in fighter jets, two of which are arriving tomorrow from South Korea.

Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin said that the fighter jets would be based probably at Basa Air Base in Pampanga or at Subic in Zambales and in Puerto Princesa City in Palawan.
“Among the areas we are looking at are Basa area, Subic and most probably Puerto Princesa,” said Gazmin during a broadcast interview.
Basa and Subic are the closest military facilities to the Scarborough Shoal off Masinloc in Zambales, where China has established a de facto control after easily snatching it from the Philippines in 2012 following a standoff between the Navy’s flagship BRP Gregorio del Pilar and a Chinese Coast Guard vessel where the former retreated.
Chinese ships have maintained presence in Scarborough or Bajo de Masinloc since the standoff.
Two of the FA-50s, steered by two South Korean pilots, are re-scheduled to touch down in Clark Air Base on Saturday. The original arrival was today but was moved due to bad weather in South Korea.
The DND contracted a squadron or 12 units of FA-50 from Korean Aerospace Industries. The delivery will be completed by 2017.

5 most wanted persons busted in separate CIDG operations

Friday, 27 November 2015 00:00 Published in Nation

In a span of 24 hours, five most wanted persons (MWPs) were collared by the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) during separate operations in various parts of the country.

Chief Supt. Victor Deona, CIDG director, said the arrest of the five fugitives — from Nov. 24 to 25 — is part of the CIDG’s relentless manhunt operations against individuals covered by warrants.
In Zambales, CIDG operatives, in coordination with Licab Municipal Police Station, arrested Luisito Gonzales in Nagbunga, Castillejos on Wednesday at around 11:30 a.m.
Gonzales is listed as Licab’s No. 4 most wanted person for murder and physical injury charges.
The No. 9 MWP of Cavite, identified as Arnold Ronquillo, was collared by members of Cavite PPO, assisted by CIDG Cavite and Imus CPS in Barangay Alapaya 2-A, Imus City at 8 a.m. Wednesday.
Ronquillo has a standing warrant of arrest for murder issued by Judge Josefina Siscar of RTC Branch 20, Imus City.
In Region V, two MWPs were nabbed by the detectives of CIDG Sorsogon and Camarines Norte, assisted by local policemen.
Amadeo Divina Jr., listed No. 8 MWP in Juban town, was arrested at around 11:45 p.m. Wednesday in Barangay Aroroy, Juban, Sorsogon; and Rommel Avancena, was apprehended at around 12:15 p.m. in Barangay Bagasbas, Daet, Camarines Norte.
Avanena, who is wanted for rape, is Daet’s No. 5 MWP.
Lastly, operatives of the CIDG-Davao del Sur, together with Bunawan MPS, Davao del Sur PPO and Sta. Cruz MPS, arrested Guilbert Lianto Rabina in Barangay Bunawan, Davao City at 10:15 a.m. Wednesday.
Rabina was arrested on the strength of warrant of arrest for three counts of rape and is tagged as the No. 1 MWP of Sta. Cruz MPS.
“All MWPs are now awaiting their respective turn-over to the issuing courts concerned,” Deona said.


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