Notorious Abu Sayyaf sub-leader killed – AFP

enablePagination: false
maxItemsPerPage: 10
maxPaginationLinks: 10

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, August 14) — A notorious Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) sub-leader named Salvador "Badong" Muktadil was killed in a gunfight with government forces in Sulu, the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) announced on Sunday.

His death was the outcome of a counter-operation by Joint Task Force (JTF) Sulu, conducted from aboard navy vessels in Silangkan, Parang, Sulu at 1:10 a.m. that day.

"His neutralization was a result of the maximized intelligence operations of our troops and the cooperation and support of the local leaders and folks," Lieutenant General Carlito G. Galvez, Jr., Commander of the Western Mindanao Command, said in a statement.

He also commended JTF Sulu, which was led by their commander Brigadier General Cirilito Sobejana.

According to Sobejana, Muktadil was "well-experienced in operating speedboats... as getaway vehicles in executing kidnapping [ploys]."

"His death rendered high seas kidnappings, particularly in Tawi-Tawi and Sabah, suppressed," Sobejana added in an official statement.

Muktadil was involved in the various abductions between Sabah and Tawi-tawi, including those of Mayor Gemma Adana of Naga, Zamboanga Sibugay, Taiwanese tourist Evelyn Chang, and Yahong Lim, the daughter of a Chinese businesswoman.

Apart from kidnapping, Muktadil also holds an arrest warrant for serious illegal detention and nine counts of murder.

"His neutralization, together with the others [who] have been killed in the fighting... the other week, about seven of them, is an additional accomplishment for Western Mindanao Command in degrading the activity of ASG to carry out more abductions," AFP spokesperson Brigadier General Restituto Padilla told CNN Philippines' The Source on Monday.

Padilla added that there were also reported attempts by the ASG to kidnap locals and "low return targets," which include the poor and vulnerable who cannot pay large ransoms.

"It's an indication that they are in dire straits because they just want to generate enough funds to support themselves," said Padilla.

According to the military report, Muktadil's remains were brought to Kuta Heneral Teodulfo Bautista Trauma Hospital in Busbus, Jolo, Sulu.