Saturday, August 10, 2013

2 BIFF men killed in North Cotabato clash — military - GMA News

Two members of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters – a breakaway group of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front now engaged in peace talks with the government – were killed and a soldier was wounded in an armed confrontation in a town in North Cotabato on Saturday.

The fighting erupted as elements from the 40th Infantry Battalion intensified law-enforcement operations in the area, said Col. Dickson Hermoso, spokesman for the Army's 6th Infantry Division.

Deployment of government troops on Friday in Midsayap's Baligki village was in response to residents' report that BIFF members harassed the community and stole the villagers' farm animals.

Hermoso said that at about 9:30 a.m. on Saturday, soldiers  caught up with the BIFF men at the boundary of Tubak village in Aleosan town and Pagangan village in Pikit town.

Fierce fighting ensued and continued as of 5 p.m., he said, adding that two soldiers were already injured.

Citing information from civilians,  Hermoso said two of the BIFF men were killed.

Moreover, he said hundreds of families flee their homes due to the fighting. — LBG, GMA News
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