30 Maute group members killed in Lanao PDF Print E-mail
Tuesday, 25 April 2017 11:40

Around 30 members of the Maute group, including four suspected foreign terrorists were killed in a series of operations launched by the military since Friday.

Western Mindanao Command Chief Lt . Gen Carlito Galvez said that the bandits were killed when troops of Joint Task Force Zampelan encountered a group of 20 terrorists last Friday morning.

Operations were launched after villagers reported being in danger because of the presence of the terrorists in the community.

Combined ground and air strikes led to the killing of at least ten terrorist on day one of the assault.

Fatalities reached a total of 30 during an encounter between miltary forces and the Maute group prior to seizing a terrorist camp at 2am this morning.  The body of one terrorist was reportedly found inside the camp that was occupied by the military.

Galvez said that at least four suspected foreign nationals were killed during the ongoing operations.  The four were among at least a dozen Indonesian and Malaysian nationals spotted by the military in areas occupied by the Maute group during offensives.

Another Maute sympathizer, identified as Imam Bantayaw, was reportedly killed during the operation. Bantayaw serves as a recruiter and trainer of the bandits and has even hosted the foreign nationals in Maute camps.  He joined the group in 2015.

Soldiers were also able to seize the following items from the camp of the terrorists:  an ISIS flag; rifle grenades; fragmentation grenades; items for making explosives, subversive documents, three motorcycles, two sacks of rice, a video camera, cellphones, and camouflage uniforms.

The military was also able to seize a passport belonging to an Indonesian national.

Operation against the bandits is still reportedly ongoing following reports that the Maute members are planning terror attacks on still unidentified targets.  (Liza Jocson)