Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Sayyaf leader captured in Basilan province

ZAMBOANGA CITY, Philippines (Mindanao Examiner / June 16, 2010) – Government troops captured an Abu Sayyaf sub-leader after storming Wednesday a hideout of the terrorist group tied to Al-Qaeda and Jemaah Islamiya in the southern Filipino province of Basilan, an army spokeswoman said.

Lieutenant Steffani Cacho said troops raided the encampment in the village of Bulan-Bulan in Lantawan town where the militant leader Kaiser Said Usman was hiding.

“Kaiser has a standing warrant of arrest and was one of those who escaped from jail in Basilan in December last year,” Cacho said, adding, soldiers recovered an M16 automatic rifle and a grenade.

Cacho gave no other details about the militant leader or whether if he was involved in the spate of bombings in the troubled province just several nautical miles south of Zamboanga City.

On April 13 this year, Abu Sayyaf militants disguised as policemen and army troops detonated bombs outside the Santa Isabel Cathedral and the Basilan National High School in Isabela City, the provincial capital, and opened fire at fleeing civilians killing and wounding several people. A third bomb planted at a roadside was detonated by security forces.

The militants escaped after holding several civilians and used them as shield. Some of them were killed, including a policeman who tried to rescue the hostages. Basilan is one of five provinces under the Muslim autonomous region. (Mindanao Examiner)

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