ZAMBOANGA CITY -- The Abu Sayyaf bandits have attacked one of the 30 villages in Patikul, Sulu, killing a Muslim preacher, said a top military official on Monday.
Brigadier General Alan Arrojado, commander of the Joint Task Group Sulu, said the attack happened around 1:45 p.m. Monday in the village of Sandah, Patikul.
Arrojado, who is also the commander of the Army's 501st Infantry Brigade, said the about 150 Abu Sayyaf bandits positioned at Patikul Hill and attacked the residents of the village of Sandah.
The attackers were followers of Abu Sayyaf leaders Ninok Safare and Hatib Hajan Sawajaan. They were irked as the residents insisted to push through with the concreting of the circumferential road linking the villages of Sandah and Tugas, Patikul.
Arrojado said that members of Barangay Peacekeeping Action Team (BPAT) "organized themselves to counter the ASG (Abu Sayyaf Group) harassment," triggering a 30-minute firefight.
Killed in the clash was Baddiri Jamdane, a recognized Imam in the village of Sandah, Patikul.
Arrojado said members of the Army's 35th Infantry Battalion were deployed to the area to assist the BPAT members. Mortar shells were pounded on the Abu Sayyaf members' positions, forcing the bandits to withdraw toward the village of Tanum. (Sunnex)