One Lawless Element Killed in Zamboanga del Norte Clash

CAMP SANG-AN, Labangan Zamboanga del Sur – One lawless element was killed and one soldier was wounded in a joint law enforcement operation conducted by the Army’s 42nd Infantry Battalion and PNP troopers in Brgy Sipakit, Sirawai, Zamboanga del Norte 5:00 a.m. Monday, March 18, 2019.

“Our troops together with the PNP were serving warrants of arrest for murder and attempted murder case against Juhuri Wahab Tukalan and Isnain Yacub under the Jamilon Tukalab group when the clash happened. The said group is notorious in kidnapping and extortion activities and are responsible in conducting ambuscades against the civilians in the area,” said Lt. Col. Leon Onggao, the 42nd Infantry Battalion Commander.

“The killed lawless element was identified by his next of kins as Ato Antao Lumingis after the cadaver was turned over to the local government unit of Sirawai. During the 2-hour firefight, wounded lawless elements were also seen by our troops as they (LLEs) scampered to different directions”, added Onggao.

Troops were also able to recover two rocket-propelled grenade (RPG) ammunitions, two 12-gauge shotguns, two improvised caliber .22, one grenade, magazines and various ammunitions, bandolier and assorted uniforms.

The wounded soldier was immediately airlifted to Zamboanga City for medical treatment.

“The encounter was the result of the collaboration among the stakeholders especially the peace-loving civilians in the area who continuously report the presence of these lawless group,” said Col. Bagnus Gaerlan, Jr., commander of 102nd Infantry (IGSOON) Brigade which has operational jurisdiction over Zamboanga del Norte.

It can be recalled that a week ago, five lawless elements were arrested and P11.4 Million worth of illegal drugs and paraphernalia were confiscated in Brgy Tenan, Ipil, Zamboanga Sibugay.

Meanwhile, Brigadier General Roberto Ancan, the 1st Infantry Division and Joint Task Force Zampelan (Zamboanga Peninsula and Lanao Provinces) commander, commended the efforts of the troops that led to the neutralization of a lawless element and the disruption of their terror activities.

“The Tabak Troopers in collaboration with the PNP will intensify joint law enforcement operation to protect the people and communities against lawless elements,” Ancan added.

“We also ensure that our wounded personnel will get the best medical care for his fast recovery,” Ancan concluded.

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