MANILA, Philippines (2nd UPDATE) – At least 12 people died after an armed clash between government soldiers and suspected members of terrorist group Abu Sayyaf broke out in Sumisip, Basilan on Thursday, an official said.
Army spokesperson Major Harold Cabunoc said the clash occurred at around 7:30 a.m. in Barangay Upper Cabengbeng and left 8 soldiers and 4 Abu Sayyaf terrorist dead.
At least 3 were reported injured from the government side and 2 from the Abu Sayyaf.
Capt. Alberto Caber, spokesperson of the First Infantry Division, said troops of the 11th Scout Ranger company were conducting mobile control when they encountered about 40 armed men.
The province was also the site of another blast last July that was allegedly perpetrated by the Al-Qaeda-linked terrorist group.
At least 6 people were killed when the explosion hit a rubber plantation in Maluso town. -- with a report from Edwin Sevidal, dzMM