Coast Guard member hurt in Basilan gun attack dies in hospital

John Unson - Philstar.com
Coast Guard member hurt in Basilan gun attack dies in hospital
The Yakan Nurhan Ijal Birong, a member of the Philippine Coast Guard assigned in Ormoc City, succumbed to three bullet wounds sustained in an attack in Lamitan City on June 20, 2024.
Photo courtesy of Philstar.com / John Unson

COTABATO CITY — The 26-year-old Philippine Coast Guard member wounded in a gun attack in Lamitan City, Basilan on Thursday afternoon died in a hospital in Zamboanga City before dawn Friday.

The Lamitan City Police Station and the Basilan Provincial Police Office stated in separate reports released to reporters at noontime Friday that Nurhan Ijal Birong, an ethnic Yakan from Akbar town in Basilan and assigned at a PCG unit in Ormoc City, succumbed to gunshot wounds he sustained in the attack.

Lt. Col. Arlan Delumpines, Lamitan City police chief, said Birong and his fiancée, Mudzrika Gayot Aman, 25, were walking together in a residential area in Barangay Maligaya when a man positioned at one side of the route shot him thrice with a pistol and escaped using a motorcycle parked nearby.

Local officials in Akbar told reporters that they are certain the killer of Birong is also from their municipality and that the atrocity that resulted in his death could be related to an old grudge between him and his attacker.

Birong was first rushed to the Lamitan City District Hospital and was, subsequently, transported to a more modern hospital in Zamboanga City owing to his delicate condition, having sustained bullet wounds in the armpit and left forearm.

He was reported to have died early Friday in a private hospital in Zamboanga City where he was brought by relatives and emergency responders from the Lamitan City local government unit for treatment.

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