1 soldier, 9 terrorists killed in clashes in southern Philippines

Source: Xinhua| 2019-07-30 19:49:00|Editor: Xiaoxia
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MANILA, July 30 (Xinhua) -- Nine terrorists and a soldier were killed in a series of military offensives in southern Philippine province of Maguindanao that started last week, the Philippine military said on Tuesday.

Arvin Encinas, spokesperson for the military's Western Mindanao Command (Wesmincom), said another soldier was injured in the 10-minute firefight between government security forces and the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) in Shariff Saydona Mustapha town.

On July 25, the military launched a "surgical operation" at around 3:30 a.m. local time against an estimated 30 BIFF militants in Maguindanao.

Wesmincom chief Lieutenant General Cirilito Sobejana said the offensive will continue to crush the BIFF, which is composed of about 300 fighters, mostly former members of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front that signed a peace accord with the government in 2014.

Sobejana said the military launched operations to prevent terror activities in urban centers and other public areas in the region.

"Deliberate offensives against terrorists continue, inflicting more casualties and impeding any hostile plans of terrorists as military troops attempt to penetrate enemy strongholds in Maguindanao," he said.

The BIFF broke away in 2010 from the larger Moro Islamic Liberation Front that forged peace with the government. The BIFF is among the radical terror groups with an alleged link to the Islamic State operating in southern Philippines.