TWELVE soldiers, including two junior officers, were awarded medals for gallantry in action in the campaign against the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) in the province of Sulu.
The awardees of the Wounded Personnel Medal (WPM) were wounded-in-action on July 8 in a clash against members of the ASG.
President Rodrigo Duterte, as the commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, spearheaded the awarding ceremony during his visit to the troops in Jolo, Sulu, on Saturday afternoon, July 15.
The Western Mindanao Command (Wesmincom) said in a statement the awarding ceremony was held at the headquarters of Joint Task Force Sulu in Camp Teodulfo Bautista, Barangay Busbus, Jolo, Sulu.
The officer-awardees are First Lieutenant Niño John Paner and First Lieutenant Ian Solatre.
The enlisted personnel-awardees are Corporal Alan Bartolome, Corporal Jeric Ghil Villaruz, Private First Class (PFC) Reynan Maristela, PFC Vergel Bali, PFC Rhenievon Saliw-an, PFC Jaifiryll Tamayao, PFC Polard Banggawan, PFC Jeremy Ganagan, PFC Tonie Mar Talatayud, and Private John Paul Annang.
All the awardees belong to the Army’s 21st Infantry Battalion.
They were wounded in a clash against the Abu Sayyaf bandits under sub-leader Almujer Yaddah last July 8 in Barangay Buhanginan, Patikul Sulu.
The clash, which lasted for one hour, also resulted to the death of four Abu Sayyaf bandits.
The troops were on a rescue mission when the clash occurred. (SunStar Philippines)