In a statement, Western Mindanao Command (WestMinCom) commander Lt. Gen. Carlito Galvez Jr. said that the unified command is confident that the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) will soon collapse based on the continuous surrender of its members.
The Armed Forces of the Philippines Western Mindanao Command appreciates the continuous surrender of Abu Sayyaf terrorists.
Among the latest surrenderers is Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) sub-leader, Nhurhassan Jamiri; the group’s overall commander in Basilan. He also served as the operations officer and chief of the urban terrorist group in Basilan.
Along with 13 of his comrades, Jamiri turned over a number of high-powered firearms to the military.
Jamiri surrendered two days after President Rodrigo Duterte visited Sulu to urge members of the ASG to surrender. He also vowed to provide housing and livelihood aid to surrendering bandits.
Speaking before 76 ASG surrenderers in the province, the president reiterated that he has no grudges against the terrorist group.
He also expressed willingness to talk to the Abu Sayyaf.
“I’m not dreaming. Only those who would want to surrender. Those who would want to fight, wala naman tayong magawa. Sabihin mo, ‘Huwag’, kung gusto niya wala ka ring magawa,” Duterte said during his speech in Sulu.
(I’m not dreaming. Only those who would want to surrender. Those who would want to fight, we can’t do anything about them. Even if you tell them “Stop”, there’s nothing you can do if they don’t want to.)
Western Mindanao Command (WestMinCom) is confident that the bandit group’s leadership will soon collapse based on the continuous surrender of its members.
“We are indeed seeing the eventual collapse of the group, as what our Secretary of National Defense Delfin Lorenzana had said in his earlier statement,” WestMinCom Commander Lt. Gen. Carlito Galvez, Jr. said.
Galvez added that Jamiri’s surrender proves that President Duterte’s strategic guidance and the diplomatic approach of the armed forces are key factors in winning the campaign against Abu Sayyaf extremists.
Based on records of the military from January to the present, 60 ASG members have surrendered; 13 have been arrested, including ASG sub-leader Walton Juljirin who was caught last Saturday; and 11 have been killed.
Two years into the Duterte presidency, the military has already neutralized three Abu Sayyaf leaders. They include: Abu Rami who was killed in Bohol; Alhabsy Misaya in Sulul; and ISIS emir in Southeast Asia, Isnilon Hapilon who was slain in Marawi. — Dante Amento | UNTV News & Rescue