MANILA, Philippines - Three Marine soldiers and two Abu Sayyaf members were killed during a clash at a village in the town of Patikul, Sulu on Sunday.
Lt. Col. Randolph Cabangbang, spokesman of the Western Mindanao Command (Wesmincom), said the fighting is still ongoing as of 3:00 p.m. At least ten from the government troops were also injured, he said.
He did not name the slain soldiers pending the notification of their families. One of the slain terrorists, on the other hand, is one “Kaisar”.
Cabangbang said troops from the Marine Batallion Landing Team 6 were sent to the Bakung village to determine reports that terrorists are keeping kidnap victims in the area.
Abu Sayyaf men, believed to be under Radullon Sahiron, attacked at around 6:30 a.m. They were also supposedly backed by followers of Tahil Sali, a Moro National Liberation Front commander.
New Wesmincom commander Maj. Gen. Rey Ardo has already ordered additional forces in the area. Cabangbang said Ardo "has ordered the dispatch of all available air and naval assets to support the engagement troops and to ensure that the KIAs (killed in action) are recovered and the WIAs (wounded in action) are brought to the nearest medical facility."