AFP to continue operations against BIFF leader Kato
Patricia Lourdes Viray (Philstar.com) - March 31, 2015 - 3:25am

MANILA, Philippines - The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) announced on Tuesday that neutralization operations for Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) commander Ameril Umbra Kato will continue despite the end of an all-out offensive against the rebel group.

The military ended its offensive against the group last Monday, citing that the BIFF leadership has declined.

READ: AFP ends offensive vs BIFF without getting Usman

AFP chief Gen. Gregorio Catapang said that the military is set to expedite the location and arrest of Kato.

According to a report, the government troops were able to neutralize military units of Commander Bisaya during an encounter last Sunday in Datu Unsay, Maguindanao.

The military also arrested BIFF 4th Division deputy commander Abdulgani Ismael Pagao on Monday night and was turned over to the Criminal Investigation Detection Group.

The AFP also vowed to continue its operations against local terrorist Basit Usman, who was one of the targets of Oplan Exodus or the Mamasapano operation which led to the death of 44 police commandos.

The military started the all-out offensive last February 25 to protect local communities who were being affected by the BIFF's attacks.

A report from the AFP showed that 164 BIFF members were killed, 64 bandits were wounded and 12 others captured since the operations started.

Ten soldiers were killed while 31 others were injured during the encounters.

ABDULGANI ISMAEL PAGAO AFP AMERIL UMBRA KATO ARMED FORCES OF THE PHILIPPINES BANGSAMORO ISLAMIC FREEDOM FIGHTERS BASIT USMAN BIFF CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION DETECTION GROUP DATU UNSAY GREGORIO CATAPANG OPLAN EXODUS
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