RealNews

New Fighting Kills 23 in Philippines

Clashes between Philippine troops and Muslim separatist guerrillas left at least 23 dead Saturday, just days before a 10-day unilateral cease-fire was set to begin. About 70 guerrillas from the Moro Islamic Liberation Front ambushed a group of militiamen in the southern Philippine province of Maguindanao at 6 a.m., killing seven and wounding two, said Maj. Gen. Generoso Senga, commander of the army’s 6th Infantry Division. The rebels seized the weapons of the militiamen and escaped. Troops backed by two M-520 attack helicopters pursued the guerrillas, killing 12. Sporadic gunbattles in the area continued for most of Saturday morning. In another encounter early Saturday, troops launched a pre-emptive strike on a rebel group planning to attack an army camp, killing four guerrillas and captured six others in Datu Paglas town south of Upi, Senga said. Full Story

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