BASILAN, Philippines (Mindanao Examiner / June 28, 2009) – Gunmen ambushed a police patrol on Sunday and killing seven on a remote village in the troubled province of Basilan in the southern Philippines, officials said.
Senior Superintendent Salik Macapantar, the Basilan police chief, said one civilian informant was also injured in the attack that occurred at around 2 p.m. in the village of Lower Benengbengan in Sumisip town.
He said among those killed in the ambush was a police officer of the 1520th Provincial Mobile Group.
“Seven of my brave policemen were killed in the ambush. One civilian who is helping us in intelligence was also wounded in the attack. There is an operation going on. We are tracking down the ambushers,” Macapantar told the Mindanao Examiner.
No group has claimed responsibility for the attack, but Macapantar said either the al-Qaeda-linked Abu Sayyaf group or Moro Islamic Liberation Front rebels could be behind it.
“We still do not know who were behind the attack – it could be the Abu Sayyaf or Moro rebels,” he said.
On Saturday, unidentified gunmen also killed two soldiers in an attack just outside an army camp in Tipo-Tipo town near Sumisip.
The two had just bought a cigarette from a store outside their camp when gunmen attacked them. The soldiers were members of the 55th Engineering Brigade deployed in Basilan to repair dilapidated schools. (Mindanao Examiner)