ASG ATTACKS SULU SCHOOL
Abducts 4 workers, hours before Duterte visit
JOLO (AP) – Suspected Abu Sayyaf gunmen abducted four workers in a school in Sulu where President Duterte visited troops waging an offensive against the militants, officials said yesterday.
JOLO – Suspected Abu Sayyaf gunmen abducted four workers in a school in Sulu where President Duterte visited troops waging an offensive against the militants, officials said yesterday.
About 20 militants barged into a grade school compound in Patikul shortly after midnight Saturday and seized six painters and carpenters, one of whom managed to escape and alerted the police.
Army troops later rescued another worker.
Duterte pinned medals on wounded troops during brief visit to Sulu last Saturday. The Chief Executive has ordered government forces to destroy the ransom-seeking militants who still hold several foreign and Filipino hostages in the jungles of Sulu.
Meanwhile, 14 inmates, including suspected Abu Sayyaf fighters and drug dealers, escaped early yesterday from a jail in a new building that also houses the police headquarters in a government compound here, officials said.
Three of those who escaped were gunned down by police and another was shot and captured. Army troops were helping police track down the rest with the use of military drones and sniffer dogs, a police statement said.
Chief Supt. Reuben Theodore Sindac, Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao police chief, said the three slain inmates were all facing illegal drugs charges. He identified them as Julbig Alinjani, Budda Basali, and Midzfar Sabili.
The wounded inmate during the pursuit operation was identified as Gummi Maimbung who is also facing drug charges.
Police said six of the escapees are suspected ASG members Makrim Habbisi, Alsimar Basali, Nasir Maldam, Albin Alibasa, Julhaber Sariol, and Benjie Pandoga. They are all facing illegal possession of firearms and explosives charges.
Four others, identified as Mustafa Sarappudin, Haber Kasim, Benjamin Baker, and Tano Hadjula, are all facing illegal drugs charges.
Senior Supt. Mario Buyuccan, Sulu police director, said the inmates escaped by sawing off the metal grill of the detention facility. They then proceeded to the second floor and jumped out of the building.
“It was then that our personnel there noticed it. They reacted to prevent the escape of the other inmates and some of them immediately conducted the pursuit operation,” Buyuccan said.
Buyuccan said that there were 38 inmates inside the detention facility at the time of the jailbreak.
Police suspect that the metal saw was sneaked by one of the jail visitors. “We are still conducting investigation as to why this happened,” said Buyuccan.
The new kidnappings and jailbreak reflect the diverse security challenges confronting the Duterte administration in the South, where thousands of troops have been separately battling militants aligned with the Islamic State group who laid siege to Marawi City on May 23.
MAP of Jolo, Sulu