2 members of elite Navy group slain in Basilan
- James Mananghaya, Roel Pareño () - December 31, 2009 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - Two members of the elite Naval Special Operations Group (NAVSOG), one of them a junior officer, were killed while one of their colleagues was wounded in a clash with suspected Abu Sayyaf bandits and Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) rebels in Barangay Kandus in Mohammad Adjul, Basilan Tuesday night, the military said.

Quoting reports, Lt. Col. Romeo Brawner, public affairs chief of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, identified the casualties as Lt. Junior Grade Christopher Pantaleon and Petty Officer 3 Almario Manalili, and the wounded as Seaman 1 Reynan Sumalinog.

Brawner said the members of NAVSOG, counterpart of the US Navy SEALs, encountered the militants at around 7:25 p.m. Tuesday while they were conducting reconnaissance and security operations along the shoreline of Barangay Kandiis, Mohammad Adjul town.

Pursuit operations have been launched against the armed men believed led by Abu Sayyaf leader Muntong Pula, also a commander of an MILF “lost command,” said Maj. Irvin Asaali, public affairs officer of Naval Forces Western Mindanao.

Rear Adm. Alexander Pama, chief of Naval Forces Western Mindanao and Task Force Trillium, said the NAVSOG operation was part of the continuing manhunt for those who bolted the Basilan provincial jail early this month.

He said the escapees are reportedly planning to join forces with Abu Sayyaf commander Furuji Indama but have been unable to do so because of the continuing military offensive against them.

Lt. Col. Edgard Arevalo, Navy spokesman, said ground and sea operations will continue in Basilan even during the holidays.

“We have to get these convicts and terrorists and bring them to justice. There’s no reason for revelry with them lurking in the hinterlands of Basilan,” he said.

– With Jaime Laude

ABU SAYYAF ALEXANDER PAMA ALMARIO MANALILI ARMED FORCES OF THE PHILIPPINES BARANGAY KANDIIS BARANGAY KANDUS BASILAN BASILAN TUESDAY EDGARD AREVALO FURUJI INDAMA MOHAMMAD ADJUL
  • Latest
  • Trending
Latest
Are you sure you want to log out?
X
Login

Philstar.com is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

FORGOT PASSWORD?
SIGN IN
or sign in with