Monday Sep, 23 2019 09:25:23 PM

14 more BIFF members surrender to Army

Mindanao Peace Process • 15:30 PM Tue Sep 10, 2019
John M. Unson
The 14 BIFF members yielded to the Army’s 601st Brigade. 

MAGUINDANAO --- Fourteen more Islamic State-inspired militants from interior towns in this province surrendered to the Philippine Army Monday.

The 14 members of the outlawed Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters yielded to the Army’s 601st Brigade through the intercession of its component-unit, the 33rd Infantry Battalion.

The group, operating in the fashion of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, is blamed for all bombings in central Mindanao since 2010.

The latest of these BIFF bomb attacks was on Saturday in the municipal market of Isulan, Sultan Kudarat that injured eight people.

The 14 BIFF bandits were presented on Monday to Col. Jose Narciso of the 601st Brigade by the commanding officer of the 33rd IB, Lt. Col. Elmer M. Boongaling.

More than 40 BIFF members have surrendered since 2017 to the Army’s 6th Infantry Division, which has jurisdiction over the 601st Brigade and 33rd IB.

The BIFF, which has three factions led by radical clerics who are eloquent in stoking hatred for non-Muslims, uses the black ISIS flag as banner.

The terror group has a reputation for attacking non-military targets to avenge deaths of members in encounters with pursuing Army units and for bombing commercial establishments if owners refuse to shell out “protection money” on periodic basis.

Major Gen. Diosdado Carreon of the Army’s 6th ID said Tuesday he is grateful to Narciso and Boongaling for initiating the backdoor diplomatic maneuvers that paved the way for the return of the 14 BIFF members to the fold of law.


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