The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) on Friday disclosed that five alleged members of the ISIS-inspired Dawlah Islamiya, including its latest “emir,” were killed when government forces clashed with the Islamic militant group in Mamasapano, Maguindanao.
According to the AFP’s Joint Task Force Central and Army’s 6th Infantry Division commander Maj. Gen. Juvymax Uy, the individual identified as the emir was Asim Karinda alias “Abu Azim,” successor to emir Salahuddin Hassan who was killed only last 29 October.
Karinda was is a trained bomb maker, Uy added.
Also killed were Fahad Salipada alias “Naz,” who once served as Hassan’s close-in security; Hamsallah Ganoy Salangani; Salah Salipada; and an alias “Tatoks.”
Members of the 6th Infantry Battalion (IB) clashed with Karinda’s group around 1:30 a.m. on Thursday in Barangay Dabenayan.
Lt. Col. Charlie Banaag, 6th IB commander, said troops recovered Karinda and his followers’ bodies after an hour-long firefight.
Government forces did not suffer any casualty, he added.
Thursday’s clash occurred just a day after an alias “Adsam,” said to be the son of a Dawlah Islamiya sub-leader, was killed in another clash in Shariff Saydona Mustapha town.
Col. Pedro Balisi, 1st Mechanized Brigade commander, said the recent successes against Dawlah Islamiya indicate that the group is “on the brink of defeat.”
“The recent armed clashes show that your security forces are committed to ensure the safety of communities and the people,” Uy said.
He reiterated his call for remaining members of the Dawlah Islamiya and the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters to surrender and avail of government incentives that would help them live normal and peaceful lives.