MANILA— Four members of the Abu Sayyaf Group and six of their supporters surrendered to the military on Friday in Sulu, the Armed Forces of the Philippines Western Mindanao Command (AFP Wesmincom) said.
“As a result of the joint efforts of the Marine Battalion Landing Team-1 and the intelligence units, and the collaboration of the local government and other law enforcement agencies, the Abu Sayyaf members/supporters surrendered at the headquarters of the MBLT-1 in Barangay Seit Lake Poblacion, Panamao, Sulu,” said Wesmincom commander Lt. Gen. Corleto Vinluan, Jr.
MBLT-1 Commanding Officer Lt. Col. Marvin Salvan, said the 4 ASG members handed over three M16 rifles, one M14 rifle, one caliber .45 pistol, and several magazines and ammunition. The wife of an ASG member also turned over one M1 Garand rifle to government troops.
The military said a 17-year-old girl was among the 6 supporters of the group who also turned themselves in.
The group underwent debriefing and was brought to Panamao District Hospital for a medical check.
4th Marine Brigade Commander Col. Hernanie Songano said the returnees will be turned over to their respective barangays for proper disposition. The firearms they turned over are with the custody of the marine brigade for documentation and safekeeping.
“I commend our marine troopers for this remarkable feat. Rest assured that we will continue to initiate peace mechanisms to convince the remaining ASG members to end their armed struggle without any single bloodshed,” said Maj. Gen. William Gonzales, Commander of Joint Task Force Sulu.