November 6, 2000, The Philippine Star, 5 soldiers wounded in Lanao Sur attack, by Roel Pareño,
ZAMBOANGA CITY — The separatist Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) has not let up in its attacks, wounding five soldiers, including a junior officer, in a gunbattle in Butig, Lanao del Sur last Saturday, the military said.
Col. Hilario Atendido, spokesman of the Armed Forces' Southern Command, said elements of the 29th Infantry Battalion were patrolling Camp Ali Ben Talib, a former MILF stronghold in Butig town, when they were attacked by the separatist guerrillas.
The wounded soldiers were identified as 2Lt. Reynaldo Romel, Cpl. Guillermo Gilane and Privates Eduardo Maranon, Artemio Flores and Christopher Abrego. Atendido said additional troops rushed to the scene and reinforced the beleaguered 29th IB elements, and engaged the rebels in a half-hour gunbattle.
Atendido said the MILF group suffered casualties. Earlier that day, elements of the 28th Infantry Battalion waylaid 10 MILF guerrillas in Malabang, Lanao del Sur, killing a rebel in a 20-minute firefight. Meanwhile, the military said 10 MILF fighters surrendered in Lumbayanague, Lanao del Sur, apparently after they could no longer bear the mounting military offensive.
A week ago, 10 rebels were killed and many others were wounded in a clash with Army Scout Rangers in the same province, Atendido said. In Sulu, mounting offensives by the military also prompted at least 11 Abu Sayyaf rebels to give themselves up the other day, the military said. Among the surrenderors were followers of Abu Sayyaf commander Patta Arola, who yielded to the 4th Infantry Battalion in Barangay Tubig-samin, Maimbung town before noon last Saturday. This, as soldiers seized two Tamaraw jeepneys, reportedly belonging to Abu Sayyaf leader Ghalib Andang, alias Commander Robot, in Talipao and Indanan towns, Atendido said.