Courtesy: Benjie Talisic
BOHOL, Philippines — The joint forces of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) have launched operations anew against the Abu Sayyaf group (ASG).
Based on a joint statement released by the AFP Central Command and the Police Regional Office 7, an ASG leader in Bohol, Joselito Melloria, alias “Abu Alih” was killed in an operation in Sitio Lagsing, Barangay Bacani, Clardin, Bohol.
Melloria allegedly led the ASG members who were able to escape after an encounter with government troops in Inabanga, Bohol last week.
Aside from the ASG sub leader, three other lawless elements, who are still unidentified by authorities, were killed.
Three high-powered firearms were found at the encounter site.
President Rodrigo Duterte is determined to hunt down the remaining members of the Abu Sayyaf Group in Bohol.
In his speech during the opening ceremonies at the Palarong Pambansa 2017 in San Jose de Buenavista, the President made the statement on his planned implementation of martial law.
“I told the military, ‘Huwag kayong matulog. Hanapin ninyo at patayin ninyo ‘yan. I want them dead. Huwag mong ibigay sa akin ‘yang nang buhay.’ Iyong mga terrorism na they cut other people’s throat, slit it and just to decapitate, they are really animals. But if you want me to be an animal, eh sanay rin ako diyan. Pareho lang tayo. I can dish out, go down what you can 50 times over. Kainin pa kita sa harap ko, bigyan mo lang ako ng suka pati asin, I’ll eat you. Pagalitin mo ako. Do not… Wala… No quarters given, no quarters asked for these people,” he said.
(I told the military, ‘Do not sleep. Hunt them down. I want them dead. Do not give them to me alive. Terrorists cut other people’s throat, slit it and just to decapitate. They are really animals. But if you want me to be an animal, I can also do that. I can dish out. Go down what you can 50 times over. I can even eat you. Just give me vinegar, fish sauce and salt, I’ll eat you. Infuriate me. Do not… no quarters given, no quarters asked for these people.)
READ: 9 dead in joint military ops vs suspected Abu Sayyaf in Bohol
President Duterte warned lawless elements who spark violence in Mindanao. He said if terrorist groups do not end their activities, the government will be forced to lock down Mindanao.
‘I said, ‘Do not force me to do it because it will be a very sad day for all of us.’ Hindi lang ‘yan terrorist ang tapusin ko, lahat na pati ugali namin kasali na ako. Magbago talaga ‘yan. No more arrogance and… tatapusin ko lahat. Kaya huwag ninyo akong pilitin kasi magbago talaga ang Mindanao. So I will lockdown Mindanao and tatapusin ko ‘yung mga problema pati tao,” he said.
(I said, ‘Do not force me to do it because it will be a very sad day for us. I will finish not just the terrorists, but all attitudes including myself. They will change. No more arrogance. I will put an end to all these. So do not force me, because Mindanao will really change. So I will lock down Mindanao, and put an end to the problems and even persons.) — Gladys Toabi | UNTV News & Rescue