Dárlán Páléncìá Bárcélón
Legazpi City, [06.21.17] – The Spokesperson of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters [BIFF] has categorically denied the reported hostage taking in Barangay Malagakit, Pigkawayan, North Cotabato perpetrated by the withdrawing troops of the BIFF as false.
This was the declaration made by the BIFF Spokesperson Abu Amir in an interview by the Philippine Examiner at noon time today.
“There is no truth to this reported hostage taking used as a human shield by the troops of BIFF, the truth is Sheik Esmail Abubakar, alias Kumander Burungus has issued an order to the civilians in the area immediately vacate the vicinity of the encounter area to ensure the populace’s safety that no civilian will be trap in the crossfire,” Amir clarified.
Skirmishes between the troops of Kumander Burungus and government troops is still on going in the area, but we are still awaiting for the additional information from the ground as to the casualty on both sides are concern, Amir added.
The clash started at 5:00 o’ clock in the morning when Barangay People’s Augmentation Team (BPAT) outpost in Barangay Malagakit and a CAFGU detachment in Barangay Simsiman in Pigkawayan was attacked by fully armed men from the BIFF, an army official from the 6th Infantry Division said in a media interview.
This is the latest clash between the BIFF freedom fighters under Kumander Burungus with the government troops this month.
On June 10 and 11, 2017 the villages Barangay Lab in Datu Unsay municipality and Barangay Kitango and Malangog, Datu Saudi, Maguindanao was under a barrage of artillery and air attacks launched by the joint elements of 1st Mechanized Infantry Brigade and 601st Infantry Brigade, Philippine Army.
The two days encounter has destroyed a masjid, a local madrasa, farms, houses that caused civilians to flee the area on Saturday and Sunday to a more safer grounds.