Iriberri orders AFP: Make Sulu and Basilan 'inhospitable' to Abus
Roel Pareño (The Philippine Star) - August 21, 2015 - 2:31am

ZAMBOANGA CITY, Philippines - Armed Forces Chief of Staff Gen. Hernando Iriberri directed Friday the ground troops to continue making Sulu and Basilan “inhospitable” for Abu Sayyaf group and keeping militants on the run.

Iriberri issued a directive following the successful offensive operation of the military under Western Mindanao Command (Westmincom), which led to the rescue of the two Philippine Coast Guard personnel held captive by the Abu Sayyaf group in the jungle of Barangay Buanza, Indanan town, Sulu.

Coast Guard personnel Seaman 2nd Class Rod Pagaling and Seaman 1st Class Gringo Villaruz escaped at the height of the assault staged by the 1st Scout Ranger Battalion led by Lt. Col. Eugene Boquio against approximately 100 Abu Sayyaf members.

The two captives, who were recovered Thursday morning near the area, were transported to the city and arrived later in the evening.

Westmincom Chief Lt. Gen. Rustico Guerrero said at least 15 Abu Sayyaf members were killed while 7 soldiers were wounded in the encounter.

Iriberri visited here Friday to personally assess the ongoing operations against the Abu Sayyaf group and commended Westmincom under Guerrero and the military units of the Joint Task Group Sulu (JTGS) led by Brig. Gen. Alan Arrojado.

Irriberi also visited the wounded soldiers at Camp Navarro General Hospital (CNGH) and pinned them with medals after citing their gallantry.

“My command guidance is for our forces to continue to make their area of responsibility inhospitable to the lawless elements and the Abu Sayyaf groups,” Iriberri said in an ambush interview.

Iriberri’s directive includes keeping the Abu Sayyaf group on the run and preventing them from staging hostile plans.

“The result of the operation is good. Relentless operations continued not only in Sulu but also in Basilan,” Iriberri said, citing the offensive operation in Barangay Baiwas, Sumisip town, which was carried out almost simultaneously with the assault at Barangay Buanza, Indanan town, Sulu.

ABU ABU SAYYAF ACIRC ALAN ARROJADO ARMED FORCES CHIEF OF STAFF GEN BARANGAY BAIWAS BARANGAY BUANZA CAMP NAVARRO GENERAL HOSPITAL CLASS GRINGO VILLARUZ IRIBERRI NBSP
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