A clash between government forces and members of the terrorist group Abu Sayyaf in Lanao del Sur resulted in the death of at least 37 militants, including two Abu Sayyaf leaders and four foreigners.
According to Armed Forces of the Philippines Chief of Staff Gen. Eduardo Año, three Indonesians and a Malaysian were believed to have been members of the Jemaah Islamiyah. The identities of the foreigners are yet to be identified and confirmed.
He also stated that as of the moment, operations will still continue as there are at least over 126 more foreigners in Mindanao who had been allegedly supporting terror groups like the Abu Sayyaf. The region is also known as a convening area for other groups such as the Jemaah Islamiyah, who is affiliated with Islamic State.
Meanwhile, 1st Infantry Tabak Division Chief Brig. Gen. Rolando Joselito Bautista said that one of those killed was Abu Sayyaf Leader, Abu Imam Bantayaw, who was stationed in the area. A sub commander identified as Mael was also killed and buried Sunday night. He also mentioned that authorities had recovered an Indonesian passport but did not provide further information regarding this discovery.
Various arms and bomb paraphernalia were recovered from the scene including uniforms and food supplies.
The 103rd Brigade led by Brig. Gen Nixon Fortes had established a new camp in Piagapo.
It has been reported that government troops are still after Abu Sayyaf Leader, Isnilon Hapilon, the emir of Islamic State in the Philippines.