SULU - Twelve soldiers of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) were killed in an encounter with the Abu Sayyaf Group in Patikul, Sulu on Monday, the military said.
Members of the 21st Infantry Battalion and troops from the 35th Infantry Battalion encountered around 70 armed members of ASG under Radullan Sahiron in Sitio Kan Jalul in Barangay Maligay in Patikul, according to initial reports.
Five soldiers were also wounded in the encounter. Authorities have yet to confirm the number of casualties on the enemy side.
Firefight was still ongoing Monday night, according to Major Filemon Tan, spokesperson of the Armed Forces' Western Mindanao Command.
An Army official disclosed Sunday that twenty-one Abu Sayyaf fighters were killed in a series of encounters with military troops in Barangay Bongkaong, Patikul, Sulu.
Lt. General Mayoralgo dela Cruz, commander of the Army's Western Mindanao Command, said the firefight continued on Saturday night, resulting in the deaths of three more bandits whose bodies were immediately recovered.
[17 soldiers injured, 11 Abus killed in clash: AFP]