Last minute reports reaching newswires today say that at least six soldiers were killed and nine others were wounded, including one civilian, after an Army Corporal ran amok with his automatic rifle in Sumisip, Basilan.
According to authorities, the incident happened at 8.45am inside the company headquarters of the 64th Infantry Battalion based in Baragangay Upper Cabengbeng.
Authorities said: “The suspect was among the six fatalities. Responding soldiers had no choice but to shoot him because he would not yield and, instead, fired at them.”
When the incident happened the corporal and his men were in the middle of a Bible study activity at company headquarters.
A spokesman for the Army said that one of the dead is that of the 1st lieutenant – he also said that “Of the nine wounded, one of them was also an officer.”
The fatalities and the wounded were brought to the 104th Infantry Brigade headquarters in Isabela City – from there they were airlifted to the hospital of the Western Mindanao Command in Zamboanga City.
The spokesman added that they would be sending medical teams to give psychological intervention among the soldiers.
“We believe this is an isolated incident, but we will look closer into the medical and psychological aspects in order to determine the root cause of the incident.
“The Army is going to provide necessary assistance to the families of the victims who are now in the process of being informed,” the spokesman said.
Officials said that the suspect had just arrived from vacation with his family a day before the incident.
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