Sayyaf men clash with soldiers; 2 dead
Roel Pareño (The Philippine Star) - July 21, 2017 - 4:00pm

ZAMBOANGA CITY, Philippines –Two Abu Sayyaf bandits were killed in an encounter with government troops in Patikul, Sulu on Thursday.

Three other bandits and a soldier were wounded in the clash. 

Brig. Gen. Cirilito Sobejana, Joint Task Force Sulu commander, said members of the 21st Infantry Battalion were conducting rescue operations for the remaining hostages of the Abu Sayyaf when they encountered around 30 bandits in Sitio Tubig Kawas, Barangay Bungkaong at about 6:25 a.m.

Sobejana said soldiers who conducted clearing operations recovered several high-powered firearms, including two M16 rifles and two grenade launchers as well as ammunition. 

Sobejana said there was no sighting of the kidnap victims, who could have been slipped out by their captors at the height of the encounter.

The Abu Sayyaf is still holding 24 hostages, 16 of them foreigners, in Sulu and Basilan.

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