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Thursday, 15 April 2010

Philippines: military battling Abu Sayyaf in Basilan after attack on Cathedral

Map of Basilan showing the location of Isabela...Image via Wikipedia
Government militiamen clashed on Wednesday with Abu Sayyaf militants tagged in deadly attacks in the southern Philippine province of Basilan, police said. Fighting broke out in the village of Begang in Isabela City, Basilan’s capital where at least 25 Abu Sayyaf militants wearing police and military camouflage uniforms on Tuesday set off two bombs that blew up a van and damaged the 40-year-old Santa Isabel Cathedral, in the worst attacks by the group in months. A third bomb placed near a judge’s house and a bus terminal was safely detonated by soldiers.

Senior Supt. Antonio Mendoza, the Basilan police chief, said that the militiamen clashed with at least seven militants who were part of the group that launched the attacks.

It was not known whether any of the attackers were wounded in the fighting, but they were able to escape toward a rubber plantation which soldiers and policemen have surrounded. One villager was taken hostage by the fleeing gunmen and were using the civilians as shield, Mendoza said.
 As ever, attacking civilians on purpose, using civilians as shield, taken hostages. Same ideology, same procedure with very little variations.
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