Another Attack in Mindanao

Two towns in mindanao were attacked by MILF rebels at pre dawn. Said the the towns were Kolambugan, Kauswagan and Maigo as well as outlying villages

In Kolambugan, troops and police fought the rebels in the town centre while houses burned, Mayor Beltran Lumaque told a local radio station.

“They have taken over the business centre, the rural banks, pawnshops,” he said.

The Army recovered the nine bodies lying bloodied by a roadside in Barangay Lapayan in Kausawagan. Houses nearby were also burned by suspected MILF rebels,

Five other civilians in another village were also killed by MILF rebels.

In Maasim, Sarangani province, Mayor Aniceto Lopez Jr., said armed men ransacked stores at the public market, raided the town hall and killed two civilians.

The fatalities were identified as Lito Jumaoas and Jojo Ruiz.

Lopez Jr. said they are trying to confirm reports that the armed men held hostage some people to use them as human shields from authorities pursuing them.

Soldiers and policemen are reportedly pursuing the group seen fleeing towards Barangay Kablakan, still of Maasim town.

Unspent rocket-propelled grenade (RPG) shells are strewn all over town.

Two holes now mar the municipal hall’s façade and such damage is believed to be caused by RPG shells the attackers fired at the building.

Residents said the raiders attacked in two groups. One group of about 40 people reportedly entered the town from the sea on board two pump boats.

The second group reportedly came from the hinterlands. Witnesses said the attackers were armed with high-powered weapons and RPGs similar to the signature weapons of Moro rebels.

They also said the attackers fired their guns indiscriminately and set up checkpoints in the town.

In Cotabato City, six civilians were killed while nine others were wounded when MILF rebels storm the remote village of Takob, Kauswagan, Lanao del Norte.

Two of six civilians killed in the crossfire were identified as villagers Anthony dela Cruz and Albert Go.

Several of those wounded as Tiburcio Roflo, Josefa Cabarihan, one; Isidro Roble; Marilee Tua, eight; and Marianne Claudete Moon, 16,

The firefight remains intense in the area even as military forces have cordoned it.

Early Monday, a passenger bus on the national highway in Lanao del Norte rammed a checkpoint and a roadblock set up the rebels.

Fourteen of the 17 passengers of an inter-provincial bus were feared executed by the rebels, but military, police and civil government officials have yet to confirm how many of the travelers were killed.

The 14 passengers were aboard the Rural Transit Bus with body number 1567 that was ambushed around 4:30 a.m. Monday while it was en route to Cagayan de Oro City. The bus left Zamboanga City around 8 p.m. Sunday.

Antonio Aurilla, the bus driver said over RMN-Zamboanga station that they were waylaid in a checkpoint near a bridge in Barangay Kulisian in Kolambugan town.

Aurilla said he stopped the bus at the checkpoint knowing that it is manned by policemen, but “they turned out of be rebels.”

Aurilla said gunfire rang out when he stepped the bus’ fuel accelerator when he sensed that the gunmen at the checkpoint are rebels.

He said he and his fare collector and three of the 17 passengers jumped out from the bus and fled when the vehicle got stocked at the bridge.

While hiding under a nipa hut nearby, Aurilla said the rebels approached the bus and heard some of them shouting “patayin nyo lahat yan.”

Aurilla’s fare collector, Boy Regaila, who spoke on the same radio station, said he heard the rebels shouted “baba ang pasahero” and gunfire followed.

Regaila said the rebels torched the bus when their guns went silent.

Aurilla and Regaila met at the police station of nearby Maigo town after they managed to flee on foot from where they were waylaid.

Kolambugan town is bounded by the Panguil Bay on the North, municipalities of Tangcal and Magsaysay on the South; the municipality of Maigo on the East; the municipality of Tubod on the West.

source: Sunstar

“Your prayers are badly needed with those people especially kids who were hostage by the rebels. “

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