Two suspected Islamic State-allied militants were killed Monday in a shootout with police and soldiers in the southern Philippines while transporting a homemade bomb, police said.
The shootout began when the suspects opened fire at security forces as they passed a checkpoint in Tacurong City in Sultan Kudarat province, 967 kilometres south of Manila.
Troops chased the vehicle and cornered the suspects, triggering the firefight that killed the two militants, police said in a report.
The military and police had set up checkpoints in the province after receiving information that militants allied with the Islamic State terrorist group would be transporting improvised explosive devices.
Police investigators confiscated a homemade bomb, a pistol, a submachine gun and a black Islamic State flag from the suspects' vehicle, the report said.
Last year, IS-allied militants laid siege to the southern city of Marawi, triggering a five-month battle that killed more than 1,200 people and displaced over half a million people.
Troops killed the leaders of the siege, including Isnilon Hapilon, the head of the notorious Abu Sayyaf group and the reported leader of IS in South-East Asia.
The Islamist Abu Sayyaf group has been blamed for some of the worst terrorist attacks in the country as well as high-profile kidnappings and hostage beheadings.
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