Troops hunt new Moro armed group PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 05 March 2015 14:38

Pursuit operations are currently being conducted against members and leaders of the so-called “Justice For Islamic Movement (JFIM),” reportedly a splinter group of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF), Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) spokesman Col. Restituto Padilla disclosed Wednesday.

The group is being headed by a certain Mohammad Ali Tambako, a former BIFF commander, who was earlier pinpointed as one of the protectors of Filipino bomb-maker Basit Usman and his five foreign cohorts, four of which are Indonesian and the other one, an Arab-looking individual.

Padilla said that efforts are underway to neutralize this new group as they constitute a threat to the peace and security in Maguindanao and other nearby provinces.

He said the JFIM was formed last November 2013 after Tambako and the BIFF leadership had some ideaological differences.

He added that Tambako’s group had an estimated 70 armed fighters at its roster.

JFIM is now allegedly operating in Mamasapano and Shariff Aguak towns in Maguindanao and Pikit, North Cotabato.

Padilla said it is also possible that Usman could have taught some members of the JFIM in the art of bomb-making and handling as Tambako’s group was the one operating the improvised explosive device factory which was captured and destroyed by the military last March 1.

He is also not discounting the possibility that the JFIM is also providing bombs to BIFF.