Five soldiers and three suspected members of a militant group blamed for deadly twin bombings at a cathedral in the southern Philippines were killed in a clash on Saturday, the military said.
Five soldiers and 13 militants were also wounded in the firefight in a village in Sulu province, 1,000 kilometres south of Manila, said Colonel Gerry Besana, a regional military spokesman.
Besana said the wounded militants reportedly included a sub-leader of the Abu Sayyaf terrorist group, which has been blamed for the January 27 bombings at the Cathedral of Our Lady of Mount Carmel in nearby Jolo town.
Twenty-two people were killed and more than 100 wounded in the blasts, which authorities said were believed to have been carried out by suicide bombers.
Soldiers were on combat patrol in search for a militant with the alias Kamah, who allegedly was involved in the bomb attacks.
Abu Sayyaf has been blamed for some of the worst attacks in the Philippines as well as high-profile kidnappings for ransom.
The group has allied with the Islamic State terrorist network, which earlier claimed responsibility for the bombings and said the attack was carried out by suicide bombers.
LEAVE A COMMENT Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked*
Philippines extends lockdown on main island until end of the month
Robredo, several lawmakers seek lockdown extension
Government suspends healthcare workers’ overseas deployment
Indonesia reports 218 new virus cases; 24 doctors dead
Devotees watch online at start of Holy Week
China sends experts as govt mulls extending lockdown
Singapore quarantines workers in virus battle
Thailand reports 102 new virus cases, 3 more deaths
Singapore reports record new cases, quarantines 20,000 migrant workers