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Author Topic: Role of couple killed with ASG bandits in Bohol being ascertained  (Read 455 times)

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Role of couple killed with ASG bandits in Bohol being ascertained

MANILA, April 17 (PNA) --- The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) on Monday said police investigations are now underway to ascertain the role of the elderly couple killed with Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) sub-leader Muamar Askali alias "Abu Rami" and three other bandits during the brigands incursion in Inabanga, Bohol on April 11.

As this develops, AFP public affairs office chief Col. Edgard Arevalo, in a press briefing Monday, said the military was surprised when reports of the death of Constancio and Crisenta Patelco allegedly due to government action against the bandits in Sitio Ilaya, Barangay Napo, Inabanga town surfaced late last week.

Allegedly, Crisenta is the aunt of Joselito "Alih" Milloria, the suspected contact of the ASG in the area.

"It is the belief of the AFP that there were no more civilians in the area when it conducted the (clearing) operations," he added in Filipino.

Also, killing or hurting civilians during the course of a focused military operation runs against the AFP theme of conducting such maneuvers in a surgical and target focused manner, Arevalo pointed out.

"Investigations are now being conducted by the Philippine National Police to determine why the couple were still in the combat area when the fighting took place," the AFP official added.

Arevalo also added that there is a possibility that the couple could have been executed by the bandits especially if they were suspected of reporting their presence to authorities.

Efforts are still underway to track down the survivors of Askali's group whom the military official described as "stragglers" and no longer pose any threat to the area's security.

Earlier estimates placed the number of ASG infiltrators at 11 and with four confirmed dead, around seven are still being hunted, although Arevalo did not give specific numbers of the surviving bandits. (PNA)

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