Skip to main content

6 soldiers hurt in Basilan blast — Army

Six members of the elite Army Scout Rangers were hurt following an explosion in Basilan on Monday, the spokesperson for the Philippine Army said. The explosive device was believed planted by suspected Abu Sayyaf bandits.

Major Harold Cabunoc, acting Army spokesman, said the patrolling troops were in the vicinity of Baiwas village in Sumisip town when the explosion occurred 8 a.m. The troops were from the 4th Scout Ranger Battalion.

"Our troops were bombed, they were ambushed… They were conducting security patrol as part of the our law enforcement operations against criminal elements in Basilan when the incident occurred," Cabunoc said.

He pointed to Abu Sayyaf leader Furuji Indama and Hassan Asnawi as those behind the explosion.

Those injured were Cpl. Jonathan Candias, Pfc. John Mark Cac, Pfc Domingo Lungao, Pfc. Jesus Dacutanan, Pfc Garry Soriano and Pfc. Wenefredo Cornelio.

Cabunoc said the wounded troops were airlifted to a local hospital for treatment.

On Oct. 18, a total of 19 soldiers, including four junior officers, were killed in a clash in Al Barka town between government troops and armed men believed to have been reinforced by suspected Moro Islamic Liberation Front rebels. Nine rebels died in the encounter.

The MILF has since claimed that it was the military that violated the truce by launching an attack within their area of temporary stay (ATS).

The ATS is a place designated by the government and the MILF Coordinating Committees on Cessation of Hostilities (CCCH) where forces of the secessionist group can stay to prevent encounters with troops pursuing members of the bandit Abu Sayyaf group.

But the military has insisted that the MILF violated the ceasefire by participating in the clash between the soldiers and the armed group. The government and the MILF has an existing ceasefire agreement. — RSJ, GMA News


More Philippine Defense News

DND wants frigate with 'surface-to-air' missile power

MANILA, Philippines - Defense spokesperson Peter Paul Galvez announced on Friday that one of the frigates to be acquired by the Philippines will have "surface-to-air" capabilities. That is, the ship will have the capability to fire missiles, guided by radar or heat sensors, at airborne targets.
"Aside from this, our latest frigate will have heavier gun armament and other equipment that will make it very effective in patrolling and securing the country's waters," Galvez said in Filipino.
He declined to state the particular country the Philippines will acquire this ship but stressed that acquisition will be done through a government-to-government transaction.
The Philippines has taken on a new sense of urgency to upgrade its naval capabilities as tensions continue to rise around the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea). US President Barack Obama's announced "pivot" for America towards the Pacific has stirred greater naval activity on the p…

No reduction in AFP manpower size

THERE will be no reduction in the number of soldiers of the Armed Forces of the Philippines when it implements the streamlining of commands by 2013, a senior officer told the Manila Standard in an exclusive interview.
“Under the Force Structure Review, there will be streamlining of units but this does not mean reduction in terms of the number of soldiers. In fact, the FSR calls for more recruits in the future,” the source, who requested anonymity, said.
At present, the military has a total of 125,000 soldiers, of which almost 85,000 are in the Army and the rest in the Navy-Marines and Air Force.
The FSR calls for an in-depth study of the AFP history in reference to pertinent laws of the land in conjunction with the challenges of internal and external defense.
The study also calls for the establishment of a strategic command that will focus on external defense where the main force would be the Air Force and Navy.
On instructions of Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin, former military ch…

Duterte visits Pakistan navy ship docked in Manila - CNN Philippines

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, December 14) — President Rodrigo Duterte toured a Pakistani naval ship Thursday and extended an open invitation to its crew to visit the country any time.

The Navy Ship SAIF, one of the four F-22P or Zulfiguar-class frigates of Pakistan, is on a three-day goodwill visit. It will stay in the country until December 17.

For more about the CNN Philippines article.

According to the Naval Technology website:
The F-22P or Zulfiquar (English: Sword) class frigate is a 2,500t multi-mission, conventionally powered frigate built for the Pakistan Navy. Design and construction of the F-22P started after a $750m deal was signed in 2005 between Pakistan’s Ministry of Defence Production (MoDP) and China Shipbuilding Trading Co (CSTC). It is equipped with a 76.2mm main gun, an 8 round FM-90 Surface-to-Air Missile, C-802/CSS N-8 Surface-to-Surface Missile in 2 containers each containing 4 missiles, 2 Type-730B 30mm Close-in Weapon System, and 2 Triple ET-52C Torp…