Two Abu Sayyaf members were killed in a firefight against government troops in Basilan on Wednesday, the Armed Forces of the Philippines’ Western Mindanao Command on Thursday.
The slain ASG members were identified as Nasirin Awwalin and Hasmin Lajid.
Meanwhile, 3 members of the Barangay Peacekeeping Action Team 4 (BPAT) were injured in a 2-hour firefight against the ASG in Brgy. Guinanta, Albarka, Basilan.
A soldier also died and 10 others were injured in a military operation against the ASG in Sulu, Thursday morning.
The injured soldiers were brought to Kuta Heneral Teodulfo Hospital in Brgy. Busbus, Jolo for medical treatment.
"The troops were acting on reported sightings of the Abu Sayyaf bandits and their kidnap victims in the area of engagement. In an attempt to rescue the hostages, our troops on the ground engaged the Abu Sayyaf members,” said Brig. Gen. Cirilito Sobejana, commander of the Joint Task Force Sulu.
Lt. Gen. Carlito Galvez Jr. mourned the death of the soldier and vowed to continue their pursuit of ASG.
"We are sad to report that one of our soldiers died during the encounter this morning in the attempt to rescue kidnap victims who are in the hands of Abu Sayyaf," Galvez said.
"We will continue to conduct pursuit and rescue operations in order to track and get these bandits the soonest."
President Rodrigo Duterte has placed Mindanao under martial law following clashes between government troops and the Maute terror group in Marawi City.