MANILA, Philippines (AP) -- Suspected Muslim militants and
government troops have clashed in the southern Philippines in
fierce fighting that killed 12 insurgents and two soldiers.
Marine commander Col. Romeo Tanalgo says the militants attacked
marines who were guarding a school construction site in Talipao
township in Sulu province at dawn Sunday. An ensuing clash killed
12 gunmen and two soldiers, while six other Philippine military
personnel were wounded.
Tanalgo says it was not immediately clear if the gunmen belonged
to the notoriously violent Abu Sayyaf group. Gunmen from another
group, the Moro National Liberation Front, also have a presence in
the far-flung area, regarded as an Abu Sayyaf stronghold for years.
Washington has blacklisted the Abu Sayyaf as a terror group.