At least five suspected Abu Sayyaf militants were killed on Wednesday, September 9, in clashes with security forces in Zamboanga Sibugay province. According to media sources, government troops conducted an operation on Wednesday morning following intelligence regarding the presence of militants in the mangrove area of Roseller T. Lim town. Reports indicate that at around 02:00 (local time) a firefight broke out between the two sides. Initial reports indicate that at least two soldiers were wounded in the clashes. Government troops reportedly recovered firearms during the operation, and had two helicopters providing air support. It is unclear if the fighting is ongoing.
Further clashes are possible in the area over the near term.
Abu Sayyaf is an Islamic State (IS)-affiliated jihadist militant group primarily operating in the southern Philippines. It has previously been involved in kidnap for ransom, especially in southwestern Mindanao and the Sulu Archipelago.
Those in the area are advised to monitor developments, remain vigilant for militant activity, and adhere to all instructions issued by the local authorities and their home governments.
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