BIFF blamed on killing of 2 soldiers outside church PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 02 October 2014 11:48

The military on Wednesday blamed the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) for the gunslaying on Tuesday of two soldiers outside a catholic church where one of them had lighted a candle in celebration of his 23rd birthday in the province of Maguindanao.

Col. Dickson Hermoso, spokesperson of the 6th Infantry Division, said the two army soldiers were unarmed when they were shot dead by suspected BIFF gunmen in the town of Datu Piang.

BIFF is a breakaway group of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), one time largest Muslim rebel organization,  that had signed on March  a peace deal with the Philippine government. The gun slaying took place in Maguindanao, host to the biggest camp of MILF.

“The slain soldiers went to the church just wearing athletic uniforms to light a candle and offer a prayer for birthday celebration. We condemn this cowardly attack to our armless men knowing they came from a church”, said Col. Hermoso, spokesperson of the 6th Infantry Division.

He said PFC Rex Limpahan was supposed to celebrate his 23rd birth anniversary on Tuesday. But  died in the gun attack carried out by two gunmen riding on a motorcycle.

Also killed in the attack was PFC Edward Baes, who accompanied Limpahan to the St. Therese church to light a candle and offer a prayer for the latter’s birthday.

Both soldiers belonged to the 62nd Division Recon Company.  They sustained several gunshot wounds in the head and body from .45 caliber and 9mm pistols and a carbine.

Former St. Therese Parish priest and peace advocate Fr. Bert Layson said he was saddened that the killing occurred in  front of a church.

Some soldiers urged human rights groups to take action saying the attack was done against unarmed soldiers who had just come from a church.

In Cotabato City also on Tuesday, men aboard a motorcycle opened on three security guards manning the main gate of the Cotabato Regional Medical Center.

Wounded were Ameruddin Sumandal, Sahab Abdullah, and one Mohammad of Goldfield Security Agency.

Police said the attack occurred around 8:10 p.m.At least 10 empty shells of a .45 caliber pistol were recovered at the crime scene.

The attackers took the M-16 rifle of one of the security guards before fleeing, police said.

Investigators also suspected the BIFF, who along with the al-qaeda linked Aby Sayyaf, has declared support th the Islamic State (IS), as behind the attack.