Monday, April 02, 2012

Sub-leader of Abu Sayyaf killed in Basilan

MANILA, Philippines (Xinhua) -- A sub-leader of the terrorist group Abu Sayyaf was killed in an ambush staged by lawless elements in Southern Philippine town of Al Barkah, Basilan Province, before noon Sunday, the military said.

Long Malat Sulayman, alias Long Malat, the sub-leader of Abu Sayyaf in Al Barkah and nearby Tipo-tipo, was attacked by a group of "local lawless elements" due to clan war around 11 a.m., said Col. Ricardo Visaya, commander of the 104th Brigade and Joint Task Force Basilan.

Visaya said Sulayman was hit in the leg and died of blood loss around 3 p.m. His body was later brought to Makalang village, also in Al Barkah town.

He added that Sulayman was the only Abu Sayyaf sub-leader who was hit in the ambush, which was followed by a firefight between the two sides.

Asked what will be the effect of Sulayman's death to the Abu Sayyaf, Visaya said: "Long Malat is a sub-leader of the Abu Sayyaf, so this will be a big loss to their leadership. They will be in disarray for the meantime that they have no leader."

As to the motive of the attack, the official said: "Those who staged the ambush have a land conflict with Malat. The rubber industry is booming here so what they need is space to plant. They have been fighting over land to plant rubber." 

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The Philippine Star | April 1, 2012 | Article Link