MANILA – The Philippine Army late Friday reported that 11 soldiers were allegedly killed and 14 others wounded in a bloody encounter with the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) in Patikul, Sulu.

This was confirmed by the Armed Forces of the Phillippines (AFP) Western Mindanao Command (Westmincom) saying the firefight with the heavily armed terror group lasted for about an hour.

Westmincom added that troops from the Army’s 21st Infantry Battalion were on a strike operation against the terror group when the bloody encounter with around 40 ASG members occurred in Sitio Lubong, Barangay Danag Westmincom chief Lieutenant General Cirilito Sobejana said.

Sobejana claimed the leader of the ASG group was believed to be Radullan Sahiron backed up by subleader of ASG’s pro-Islamic State faction Hatib Hajan Sawadjaan.

Bloodstains accordingly littered on the clash site, an indication the ASG group accordingly suffered an undetermined number of casualties Sobejana said.

The ASG accordingly fled the vicinity after the encounter.

However, there were no confirmed reports of casualties on the ASG side. (ia/sovereignPH.com)

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