The Daily Manila Shimbun


Indonesian, Filipino rebel leader escape military’s airstrikes in Maguindanao

March 16, 2017

General Santos City — A suspected Indonesian bomb expert and his Filipino companion said to lead the Moro Islamic Liberation Front’s faction escaped military airtrikes on Monday in Maguindanao. Capt. Ervin Encinas, spokesperson of the Philippine Army's 6th Infantry Division, said Thursday their air strike was to target  Commander Bungos of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighter and Indonesian Abu Torayte, also known as Mohammad Ali. Encinas said their operation was concentrated in the villages of Andavit and Tee in Datu Salibo town. “We got no concrete reports from the field if they are dead or wounded. But some residents told our men they seen some dead on the side of the rebels,” Encinas said. Ali, who works as bomb maker of the BIFF, has a $500,000 reward. The military claimed four Indonesians and the Arab, identified as a chemist, have been hiding in the towns of Shariff Aguak, Pagatin (now Datu Saudi Ampatuan), Mamasapano and Datu Salibo.  More than 300 families were displaced in the latest military operation. DMS