258 Abu Sayyaf members 'subdued' since January: AFP

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jul 01 2017 01:10 AM

A total of 258 Abu Sayyaf members have been "subdued" by the military since January, the Armed Forces of the Philippines Western Mindanao Command (Wesmincom) said Friday.

The military said out of the 258 bandits, 94 were killed, 66 were arrested, and 98 surrendered. A total of 148 firearms were also recovered.

Two Abu Sayyaf members surrendered in Basilan on Thursday, a day before President Rodrigo Duterte marked his first year in office.

The ASG members identified as Serham Hasim Akkalun and Hapid Madjakin yielded an M1 rifle and a clip with four rounds of live ammunition.

Wesmincom Chief Lt. Gen. Carlito Galvez said the government welcomes those who have surrendered.

"We welcome those who return to the fold of the law and accord them the opportunity to live normal lives, far from what they have been facing before as combatants who engaged the government forces and who fight for extremism to thrive in Mindanao," Galvez said in a statement.

"[We] will continue to work hard and integrate the efforts of our soldiers and our stakeholders in sustaining the internal security in Mindanao and in bringing about the defeat of the Abu Sayyaf.”