MAGUINDANAO - Four alleged members of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) were killed in clashes with government troops in the towns of Rajah Buayan and Mamasapano on Saturday, according to the military.
Lt. Col. Edgar Catu of the Philippine Army's 40th Infantry Batalion said they were conducting combat clearing operations against the BIFF when the encounter happened.
The operation was launched following a roadside bombing in Barangay Pidsandawan, in the town of Rajah Buayan on Friday morning, which wounded 9 soldiers.
According to the military, the soldiers were on board a military vehicle en route from Barangay Bakaj to Barangay Zapakan when an improvised explosive device went off on the side of the road.
Meanwhile, BIFF spokesman Abu Misry Mama denied the reports that they sustained 4 casualties in clashes with the military.