Abu Sayyaf sub-leader nabbed in Sulu
Government troops captured an injured sub-leader of Abu Sayyaf Group in an encounter in Patikul, Sulu Sunday morning.
Joint Task Force Sulu commander Brigadier General Cirilito Sobejana identified the sub-leader as Walton Juljirin, whose group was allegedly responsible in the series of bombings along the highway of Patikul.
A five-minute encounter ensued between members of the 32nd Infantry Battalion and five suspected ASG members at around 7:00am after civilians tipped off their location.
The four terrorists managed to escape, while Juljirin was left behind due to the severe wounds that he suffered.
“Our soldiers eventually captured Walton Juljirin, the ASG subleader during the clearing operation,” Sobejana said.
He said the troops immediately gave him medical attention before bringing him to the headquarters of the 501st Brigade in Brgy. Tagbak, Indanan, Sulu.
The government troops also recovered one cal 7.62 FN-G1 rifle, magazines, ammunition, suspected improvised explosive device, and two hand grenades.
“The group of Walton Juljirin is also under the group of ASG sub-leader Mundi Sawadjaan (nephew of ASG leader Hajan Sawadjaan)” Sobejana said.
Western Mindanao Commander Lieutenant General Carlito G Galvez, Jr. said Juljirin’s group is the liquidation squad of Sawadjaan’s group.
“With the capture of Juljirin, we are optimistic that we will gain more grounds and soon defeat the Abu Sayyaf here in the island provinces,” Galvez said.
“Our priority is to find and rescue the remaining kidnap victims who are still in Sulu area. We are currently doubling our efforts towards that goal.”
The Abu Sayyaf bandits are still holding 10 captives, including three Indonesians, a Vietnamese, a Dutch and five Filipinos.
From January 1 to March 30, 2018, the military was able to neutralize 84 Abu Sayyaf members.
Of this number, 60 bandits surrendered to authorities, 13 were arrested, and 11 were killed in the operations. Ella Dionisio/DMS