An alleged member of the Islamic State-linked Maute group was killed and another surrendered to government forces in Lanao del Sur, the military reported.
Troops recovered the slain militant’s body and some war materiel following skirmishes in Brgy. Kalungnan, Piagapo town on Wednesday afternoon, according to a report from the Armed Forces’ Western Mindanao Command.
Soldiers under the Army’s 103rd Brigade first encountered an undetermined number of militants around 3:00 p.m.
The armed confrontation resulted in the death of one militant and the recovery of an M16 rifle.
Reinforcements were deployed to conduct blocking and pursuit operations against the militants who withdrew after the first skirmish.
During the pursuit, troops were engaged in another firefight with the surviving militants just a few meters away from the first encounter site.
That exchange of fires lasted for about 1 hour and 49 minutes, after which the militants withdrew again and soldiers captured their position.
Found at the area were two short and one long steel magazines, a bandolier, two cut PVC pipes, and half a kilo of ammonium nitrate.
Earlier in the day, around 12:00 p.m., another suspected member of the Maute group surrendered to the 103rd Brigade in Piagapo.
The surrenderor, whom the military only identified as alias “Cardo,” turned over a Garand rifle, one clip, and six rounds of live caliber-.30 ammunition.
“Cardo,” a 22-year-old resident of Marantao, revealed that he was involved in the Siege of Marawi City in 2017 but has since laid low, according to the Wesmincom.
“He has no standing warrant of arrest and is currently undergoing custodial debriefing for us to be able to gather more information about him, his previous activities, and the group,” said Brig. Gen. Jose Maria Cuerpo II, 103rd Brigade commander.
Maj. Gen. Generoso Ponio, AFP Joint Task Force-Zampelan commander, said units under his office will continue to intensify offensives against remaining members of the Maute group.
Since January 2021, a total of 12 members of the group have been neutralized, of which six were killed and six surrendered, according to the military.