Wednesday, September 26, 2007

2 Soldier Killed in Pinoy Duffy

How is it in the Philippines they are "Islamic Extremists" but in Thailand they are "Seperatists" or just "Restive"?

Two Philippine soldiers dead in assault on Muslim extremists

Two soldiers were killed and nine wounded in a clash with Al-Qaeda-linked Muslim extremists on the southern Philippine island of Basilan, military officials said Wednesday.

The Abu Sayyaf Muslim extremist group also suffered an undetermined number of casualties as the government stepped up its operations against rebels who killed 14 Marines -- beheading 10 of them -- in an ambush in July.

Abu Sayyaf members were seen dragging their fallen comrades away from the battle site, said regional military spokesman Major Eugene Batarra.

Intelligence reports indicated they suffered several dead and wounded, he added.

The two soldiers killed were members of Philippine special forces who were spearheading an assault on a group of Abu Sayyaf led by Furuji Indama who were involved in the July 10 ambush, said Brigadier General Arturo Ortiz, head of the army special forces.

The government responded to the July ambush with a massive military offensive leading to a clash on August 18 that left 16 Marines dead and about 30 Abu Sayyaf militants dead or wounded. However, Indama's group escaped the offensive.

Since then, there have been no reports of heightened fighting between the government and the Abu Sayyaf, which has been linked by intelligence agencies to Osama bin Laden's Al-Qaeda network.

The Abu Sayyaf has been blamed for the worst terror attacks in Philippine history including bombings and mass kidnappings of foreigners and Christians.

US Special Forces are in the southern Philippines helping local troops hunt down members of the group.