Government troops have killed a sub-leader of the Abu Sayyaf Group and rescued four Indonesian hostages who were kidnapped in January last year.
Western Mindanao Command head Lt. Gen. Corleto Vinluan Jr. said three of the four hostages – Arizal Kasta Miran, Arsad Bin Dahlan and Andi Riswanto were rescued after the boat used by the ASG to bring the hostages to Tawi-Tawi capsized Thursday off Pasigan Island.
The ASG bandits, led by Majan Sahidjuan alias Apo Mike, were able to cross to Tawi-Tawi with the fourth hostage, 15-year-old Mohd Khairuldin.
Sahidjuan’s group clashed with members of the Philippine Marines Saturday evening in Kalupag Island.
“He (Apo Mike) was severely wounded during the encounter. We tried to save him but his gunshot wounds were fatal,” said Lt. Col. Venjie Pendon, Marine Battalion Landing Team-6 commander.
Vinluan said the fourth hostage was found by government troops in the same village where the encounter with the ASG took place.
The four Indonesian victims were among the five fishermen abducted from a Sabah-registered trawler on Jan. 16, 2020 by the ASG in the waters between Tambisan and Kuala Meruap in Lahad Datu, Sabah.
The fifth victim, La Baa, was killed by the ASG when he tried to escape at the height of a clash with government troops in September last year in Barangay Maligay, Patikul, Sulu.