Skip to main content

Semporna clash leaves 6 Malaysian lawmen, 11 sultan followers dead—DFA

MANILA, Philippines—The clash between the “Royal Army” of the Sultanate of Sulu and Malaysian authorities in the village of Simunul in Semporna town has left six policemen and 11 supporters of the Sultan dead, according to the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA).
The clash is the second incident of violence in Sabah following the gunfight on Friday in Tanduo village in Lahad Datu Friday morning that left 12 dead on the side of the Sultanate and two dead from the Malaysian security forces.
“Based on the report of our embassy officials and the information gathered directly from the special branch operations of the Malaysian police, as of 8 p.m. on Sunday March 3, the Semporna incident that happened over the weekend has been brought under control by the Malaysian authorities,” DFA Spokesman Raul Hernandez told reporters Monday.
“During the Semporna incident, six members of the police and 11 supporters of the Kiram group were killed in action,” Hernandez said.
Sulu Sultan Jamalul Kiram III had previously sent his men to Sabah to reclaim what he says is their rightful territory.
The Malaysian government has been repeatedly ordering the group in Lahad Datu, led by the Sultan’s brother Rajah Muda Agbimuddin Kiram, to leave Sabah.
A separate group had attacked a police station in Semporna and “freed more than a hundred Filipino Muslims who were arrested on Friday and they even captured the Malaysian police chief and his colleagues,” Alim Hashim Mudjahab, chairman of the Islamic Council Committee of the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF), had said.
Hernandez said Monday that DFA Secretary Albert Del Rosario had met anew with Malaysian Ambassador Mohammad Zamri bin Mohammad Kassim to convey the Philippines’ request for the Malaysian authorities to exercise maximum tolerance in dealing with the sultan’s followers.
He also reiterated the government’s request that the Malaysian authorities give a full briefing of the operations conducted against Kiram’s group and that a Philippine Navy ship, BRP Tagbanua be allowed to dock and provide humanitarian, medical, and consular assistance to Filipinos there.
“The loss of lives in Sabah is deeply regrettable, we offer our profound condolences to the families of victims of this unfortunate incident,” Hernandez said.
Del Rosario left for Kuala Lumpur Monday afternoon to personally hand over the requests of the Philippine government to his counterpart in Malaysia, Foreign Minister Anifah Aman.
Hernandez said that Del Rosario and Aman would “continue discussions on how to avert further loss of lives.”
 |  | March 4, 2013 | Article Link


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…

Philippine Armored Vehicles with ad-hoc wood slat armor

While searching for Philippine armored vehicles for the updates being done for both the blog and the Facebook page I chanced upon images of Philippine Army and Marine armor assets covered with thick wood planks as slat armor for protection from rocket propelled grenades. This caught the eyes of Popular Mechanics who published an article last June 8th just for this subject.

According to the article,
Wood armor on armored vehicles won't save them from ISIS rockets. Not sure, I'll leave that to the actual reports from the Philippine Military in using wood as an ad hoc protection for rpg's, but yes this is only during emergencies. The Philippine Army and Philippine Marines should employ or use the real add-on armors currently in the market for armored vehicle protection. Or they could just simply buy new thicker-armored vehicles to be used for front-line operations and have the old vehicles to be used in secondary missions or as support vehicles.

Nonetheless the fast-thinkin…