Troops retake rebels’ towns
The retreating Moro Islamic Liberation Front rebels took dozens of civilians hostage in Kolambugan town as a human shield. (Which is Â traditional Muhammedan warfare..)
MILF jihadists raid towns, burn homes in Philippines
Jihad heating up in the Philippines. “Muslim rebels raid Philippine towns,” fromÂ ABC News Australia, August 18 (thanks to JW):
Muslim separatist rebels raided two southern Philippine towns on Monday, burning houses and taking over local banks and businesses, prompting some residents to flee, officials said.Over 200 Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) rebels entered the predominantly Christian town of Kolambugan in southern Lanao del Norte province before dawn, engaging troops and local police in intense gun battles, said town mayor Beltran Lumagi.
“They are now in the poblacion area (town centre), they have taken over the business centre, the rural banks, pawnshops,” Mr Lumagi said on Manila radio station DZBB.
He said police and army forces were trying to hold the rebels at bay and fighting had been intense.
The mayor reported many residents had fled, and he was trying to confirm unverified reports some may have been held hostage.
He said he could see houses still burning.
“We need reinforcements,” he said.
MILF rebels also entered two villages in the nearby town of Kauswagan, triggering heavy gunbattles with troops, police officer Misteryoso Arangco said.
The attacks came a day after MILF rebels ambushed a military convoy, killing four soldiers and three pro-government militiamen in Lanao del Sur province. Eight soldiers and three other militiamen were wounded in the attack….