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Another encounter in Zambo Sibugay

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The police and military troops operating against a kidnap-for-ransom-group in Payao, Zamboanga Sibugay Province (ZSP) encountered yesterday a group of men armed with high-powered firearms at Sitio Talaib, Barangay Labatan, Payao, ZSP.

Police Regional Office 9 (PRO9) regional director Chief Supt. Elpidio de Asis Jr. told Zamboanga Today that the encounter occurred at about 9:30 in the morning when a team from the Naval South 6, Philippine Navy clashed with undetermined number of lawless elements while conducting high sea blockade and reconnaissance operation.

De Asis said the lawless elements were equipped with high powered 50 Caliber machine guns and were already in advantage and ambush position.
Reports disclosed that the Field Artillery Battalion of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) fired several shots of 105 millimeter howitzer at the enemies.

De Asis averred that there was no report of any casualty from the government troops while an undetermined number of casualty was incurred by the lawless elements.

PRO9 chief revealed that all police units in the area were alerted to prevent the fleeing armed lawless elements from seeking shelter in the nearby residential area.

Joint police and military intelligence was already dispatched in the area to monitor the presence of the group especially, the group of Waning Abdusalam, and for their possible arrest.

As of press time, the police and military are still running after the fleeing rebel group.

By Eugene A. Lasprilla



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