32 police commandos and five MILF forces killed in Magunindanao clash

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32 Police Commandos & 5 MILF Forces Dead in Fierce Magunindanao Clash – www.philippineslifestlye.com

So far, at least 32 police commandos and five Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) soldiers were killed in fierce clashes this weekend. 

The Special Action Force commandos were pursuing a ‘high-value’ target in the village of Tukanalipao in Maguindanao’s Mamasapano town when they entered an MILF base just before dawn, sparking a firefight which lasted several hours. 

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Sporadic clashes between the two units continues and so far only an estimate of 37 dead can be taken – the fear is that even more then the original count lie dead in and around the camp area. 

The police sent in reinforcements to rescue the commandos, but they were intercepted by Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) near the village. Four BIFF fighters were reported slain in the clashes.

Army troops were sent to the area after police sought help from the military to retrieve the slain commandos.

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Police and military officials were not immediately available to give a statement, but the MILF, which signed a peace deal with Manila last year, has confirmed the clashes and blamed the police for the violence.

The 6th Infantry Division was also not informed of the police operations and unaware of it until soldiers reported heavy clashes before daybreak and fighting lasted until late in the afternoon.

The fighting started just before President Benigno Aquino visited Zamboanga City where a deadly car bomb is being blamed on Abu Sayyaf terrorists of that region.

His sudden visit also coincided with the arrival of Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte who is advocating federal reform of government. Duterte is being pushed by many Filipinos to run for president in next year’s general elections.

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