Eleven “disgruntled” members of the Abu Sayyaf terror group in the southern provincial capital of Jolo have surrendered to authorities to avail themselves of the social integration benefits from the Armed Forces of the Philippines and Sulu’s local government, the military said Saturday.
The 11, aged 24 to 52, were reportedly under Mundi Sawadjaan and Radulan Sahiron, a press release from the AFP Western Mindanao Command said.
The surrender on Friday afternoon to Col. Antonio Bautista Jr., commander of the 1101st Brigade of the Philippine Army, was facilitated by the 41st and 100th Infantry Battalions and the Municipal Task Force on Ending Local Armed Conflict of some municipalities in Sulu.
There were no immediate details on where the 11 are by Saturday sundown.
The surrender came a week after an Indonesian woman suspected of planning a suicide bomb attack in Jolo was arrested in a pre-dawn raid.
The arrest of the Indonesian woman came less than two months after 15 people were killed and 74 others wounded when two suicide bombers, both of them women, blew themselves up on Jolo island.
Security forces blamed the August 24 attack on the Abu Sayyaf armed group, listed by the United States as a terrorist organization.
The Indonesian woman was identified as Rezky Fantasya Rullie and was the widow of an Indonesian who was killed in Sulu in August, the Joint Task Force said in a statement.
She was also believed to be the daughter of two suicide bombers who killed 21 people in an attack on a Catholic cathedral in Jolo early last year, it added.
“We have been pursuing foreign terrorist suicide bombers in Sulu after the twin bombing of Jolo town (in August),” said Brig. Gen. William Gonzales.
“Rullie was first on our list since we have received intelligence reports that she is going to conduct (a) suicide bombing.”
A vest rigged with pipe bombs was seized along with other improvised explosive device components from the Jolo island house believed to be owned by an Abu Sayyaf leader, according to the military.