ZAMBOANGA CITY – Government troops overran a hideout of the Islamic State for Iraq and Syria (ISIS)-inspired Dawlah Islamiya following a clash in the hinterlands of Lanao del Sur, officials said Tuesday.
Lt. Col. Franco Rapahel Alano, commander of the Army’s 55th Infantry Battalion, said the firefight occurred Monday in Barangay Tamparong, Madalum, Lanao del Sur.
Alano said the clash broke out after the troops launched combat operations in response to civilian tipoffs about the presence of Dawlah Islamiya terrorists recruiting and forcing them to procure food items.
Alano said the troops overran the hideout following a fierce firefight.
He said a soldier was killed as he accidentally tripped on an improvised explosive device (IED) fashioned out as a landmine left by the Dawlah Islamiya terrorists when they fled.
Meanwhile, Col. Jose Maria Cuerpo II, commander of the Army’s 103rd Infantry Brigade, expressed grief that one of the soldiers paid the ultimate sacrifice in protecting the province from the Dawlah Islamiya terrorists.
“Rest assured, we will continue the fight, we will not stop until we could declare the whole province of Lanao del Sur terrorist free,” Cuerpo said.
Maj. Gen. Generoso Ponio, 1st Infantry Division commander, vowed to sustain the military operations against the Dawla Isamilya in its area of responsibility.
“We remain relentless against these terrorist groups; however, we will still encourage them to return to the folds of the law,” Ponio said. “Likewise, we will be facilitating the necessary support and assistance for the bereaved families.” (PNA)