Philippines Jihad Update. In the past, the MILF brass have blamed incidents like this on “renegades.” They sure seem to have a lot of them. “Philippines: Troops clash with gunmen in south,” from AdnKronos International, August 19:
Manila, 19 August (AKI) – Philippine troops have clashed with about 30 gunmen who took over a remote islet near resorts popular with foreign tourists, killing at least seven and capturing two others, officials said on Wednesday. The gunmen were believed to be Muslim separatists from the Moro National Liberation Front.
A man wanted on charges of illegal possession of firearms led the group that seized a mosque on Mantangule islet in the southern part of Palawan Island at the weekend, taking hostages and extorting money from terrified residents, said navy spokesman Lt. Col. Edgard Arevalo.
The gunmen refused to surrender during talks over the past few days, and marines aboard navy vessels landed on shore early Wednesday, triggering clashes with the gunmen, Arevalo said.
Seven gunmen were killed, two were captured and a marine was wounded, he said.
About 2,000 residents had fled since Saturday to Balabac Island in the strait that separates the Philippines from Malaysia.
“We’ve entered the villages they occupied but fighting is still going on,” Arevalo said. “We’ve taken over their positions and they’re running away.”…