Victor Reyes 11/23/11
THE Armed Forces will be sending an additional Army battalion to Basilan, site of last month’s killing of 19 Special Forces soldiers by members of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front and the Abu Sayyaf bandit group.
The deployment, which is expected before the year ends, is part of the military’s renewed campaign against the Abu Sayyaf and other lawless elements, said Col. Ricardo Visaya, concurrent commander of the 104th Brigade and the newly formed Joint Task Force Basilan.
“We would like to defeat once and for all the threat of Abu Sayyaf in the area and other lawless elements. That’s the reason why we have additional forces coming in…It’s being worked out by GHQ (general headquarters),” said Visaya.
He said the deployment was…read more
November 22, 2011
MANILA (Xinhua) — Two members of the separatist Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) were killed on Monday in a clash between two groups of MILF rebels in Lambayong town, Sultan Kudarat province.
Col. Leo Ferrer, commander of the Army’s 601st Brigade, said Tuesday that a long-standing land dispute triggered the fighting between members of the MILF’s 106th and 108th Base Command.
The gunfight lasted for four hours. Sampulna Baumol, commander of the 108th Base Command and one of his men were killed during the clash….read more
November 20, 2011
NORTH COTABATO — Suspected Moro rebels reportedly asked for P2 million in exchange for the release of a 23-year-old nephew of Mayor Loreto Cabaya of Aleosan town.
The kidnappers, who are believed to be members of a breakaway group of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, abducted Saturday dawn Romy Cabaya, 23, third year student of the Southern Christian College in Midsayap, North Cotabato.
The military said the kidnappers, who are followers of Ameril Umra Kato, founding leader of Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters, thought the victim was Mayor Cabaya’s son.
The mayor appealed to the kidnappers to free the victim unharmed…read more
By Zaff Solmerin, Business Mirror
Two commanders of the Abu Sayyaf bandit group operating in Basilan have been using force and intimidation against parents who refuse to let their children join the bandits.
The military said the bandits use the child warriors as human shield from pursuing government troops.
“Boys are being recruited by the bandits either by force and intimidation or promises of easy money,” said Maj. Harold Cabunoc, spokesman for the Army.
Earlier Col. Ricardo Visaya, commander of the Army’s 104th Infantry Brigade, confirmed the recruitmentof child warriors in Basilan and said Army authorities were already coordinating with local officials, parents and the provincial office of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) for the launching of a joint action to stop the bandits from recruiting child warriors.
He identified the two bandit commanders responsible for the recruitment of children as Furuji Indama and Nurhassan Jamiri.
Indama and his group figured in the October 18 killing of 19 Army Special Forces troops in Al-Barka town. Six of the fatalities were mutilated….read more
By TONY PE. RIMANDO
November 20, 2011
PAGADIAN CITY, Philippines – Department of Education (DepEd) Secretary Armin A. Luistro has ordered the increase to P5,000 each the monthly allowance of teachers of Madrasah (Islamic institutions of learning) deployed in various areas of Mindanao, and other Muslim-populated regions of the country.
Luistro said the Madrasah mentors (known as Asatidz) – who handle the Arabic Language and Islamic Values Education (ALIVE) subjects in public elementary schools – were previously paid a monthly allowance of P3,000 on top of the honorarium granted to them by concerned local government units (LGUs) where they are assigned.
The DepEd chief explained through Dr. Manaros Boransing, DepEd consultant for Muslim Education, that close to 2,500 Asatidz who passed the initial Arabic Qualifying Examination prior to their completion of the 23-day Pre-Service Training on Language Enhancement and Pedagogy, have been teaching ALIVE subjects for the past five years in various public elementary schools with substantial number of Muslim pupils.
Boransing said these Muslim pupil-populated elementary schools are located mostly in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) provinces of Basilan, Sulu, Tawi-Tawi, Maguindanao, and Lanao del Sur, even as other regions in the Southern Philippines as well as Metro Manila, Southern Tagalog, Central Luzon, and the Visayas where many Muslim families, largely due to their innate trading business, have virtu-ally transferred residence… read more
A commander of the breakaway faction of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) was killed Saturday in an encounter with his former comrades in Maguindanao province, a military spokesman said.
“[The] two warring factions of the Moro rebel groups clashed due to unsettled difference,” said acting Army spokesman Maj. Harold Cabunoc of the clash, which occurred in Datu Saudi Ampatuan.
He said the clash was triggered by a long-standing rido or clan war.
The MILF rebels were led by one Commander Fahad, reportedly of the group’s 118th Base Command, while the other group, called the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Movement (BIFM), was led by one Commander Mutin.
“Sporadic gun fires were heard until in the evening. Commander Mutin was reported killed in the fighting,” said Cabunoc… read more
by Inday Espina-Varona, BMPM
MANILA, Philippines – Kin of 32 journalists who were killed in the November 23, 2009 Maguindanao massacre have alleged that intermediaries of the Ampatuan family — the principal suspects in the murders — have approached each family with a P25-million offer.
Grace Morales, who lost her husband Rossell and sister Marites Cablitas, said the offers increased as the arraignment of 92 suspects moved at a snail’s pace.
“Nilapitan ang kamag-anak ko… Lahat nilapitan,” she said. “Tumataas, P25 million na last month.”
Morales said the emissaries offered to finalize arrangements in return for a P5-million cut from each family.
Morales and Reynafe Momay, daughter of photojournalist Reynaldo, whose remains yet have to be found,…read more