By John Mahusay
ZAMBOANGA CITY – Government forces have killed Friday the sub-leader, and a member of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) in an encounter in Sulu.
In his report to Western Mindanao Command (Westmincom), Col. Ruben Candelario, brigade commander of the 4th Marine Battalion Landing Team-1, said the government forces had clashed with the group of ASG sub-leader Hatib Munap Binda before sunrise on Friday at Bud Bawis Complex in Kawasan village, Panamao town.
The bandits fled after a 30-minute firefight, Candelario said.
Gov’t troops neutralize Abu Sayyaf Group sub-leader, member in Sulu
Camp Navarro, Calarian, Zamboanga City- November…
After the encounter, the Marine troops scoured the site where they recovered the dead body of Binda.
The troops, according to Candelario, had also recovered one M16, and one M14 rifles.
An hour after the clash, another team of the MBLT-1 had encountered the ASG group led by Sansibar Bensio few meters away from the first clash site.
“The encounter lasted for about 20 minutes which resulted in the death of a certain Bensio Barahama and the recovery of one M14 rifle,” MBLT-1 Commanding Officer Lt. Col. Marvin Salvan said.
There was no casualty on the side of the government forces.
Salvan attributed the “good intelligence operations” for the positive results.
“Based on our records, Binda is the senior leader of the ASG operating in the municipalities of Kalingalan Caluang and Panamao, Sulu,” Westmincom chief Lt. Gen. Corleto Vinluan, Jr. said.
The slain ASG leader became of a member of ASG since 2002.
“He was an associate of the late ASG sub-leader Alhabsi Misaya during the conduct of series of kidnappings in the tri-boundaries of Malaysia, Indonesia, and Philippines,” Vinluan added.
Barahama, on the other hand, is the alleged sub-leader of the Panamao-based ASG and is involved in numerous kidnap-for-ransom activities victimizing foreign nationals including the Swiss national, Lorenzo Vinciguerra; and Indonesian nationals Maharudin Bin Lunani, and Muhammad Farhan.
Vinluan also tagged Barahama in the kidnapping of the following kidnapping incidents: Ronnie Sandagon, Jerel Pepito, Eddie Reubal, Marcial Espaňa, Arvin Sabanduquia, Rufino Bustilo, Joseph Bani, Hajan Terong, Joshua Bani, and Michelle Tolentino Panes.