Two Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) bandits were killed while four others were captured following a brief firefight when troops launched a law enforcement operation in Sulu, a top military official said Thursday.
Lt. Gen. Arnel dela Vega, Western Mindanao Command (Westmincom) chief, said the firefight broke out around 1:30 a.m. Wednesday in Barangay Kajatian, Indanan, Sulu.
Dela Vega identified the two slain ASG bandits as Jade Hassan alias Radjik and Kemar Jade. Arrested were Lino Tantung, 42; Hamjir Sahidal, 19; Sajiyal Asiral Alamia, 46; and, Arajal Amicul Aida, 46.
Dela Vega said the firefight broke out as the ASG bandits resisted the joint team of soldiers and policemen during the law enforcement operation.
Recovered from the clash site were pne 12 gauge shotgun with eight ammunitions, two caliber .45 pistols with two (2) magazines and 14 live ammunition.
Government forces also recovered from the possession of Sahidal one heat-sealed transparent plastic with white crystalline substance believed to be methamphetamine hydrochloride commonly known as shabu.
The recovered firearms and ammunition were turned over to police Regional Crime Laboratory for documentation and reference while the remains of the two ASG bandits were brought to Camp General Teodulfo Bautista Station Hospital for post-mortem care and proper disposition.
Dela Vega said the law enforcement operation was part of the intensified campaign of the Joint Task Force of Sulu and Sulu Provincial Police Office in line with President Rodrigo Duterte’s war against drugs.
The military official warned that ASG members only have two options: “Lay down their arms and return to the folds of the law or second, fight and deal with the full force of the law.” (PNA/Teofilo Garcia, Jr.)