19 ASG members in Basilan surrender to military

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(CNN Philippines, May 5) — Nineteen members of the Abu Sayyaf Group surrendered to authorities in Basilan province, Thursday.

Two sub-leaders, Nur Hassan Lahaman and Mudz-Ar Angkun, together with their followers, surrendered to troops of the 64th Infantry Battalion in barangay Tumahubong, Sumisip, Basilan.

Angkun's group operates in Sumisip while Hassan operates in Tuburan municipality. The surrenderees also yielded several high powered firearms to the government.

Meanwhile, four of the surrenderees are followers of slain ASG leader Alhabsy Misaya, who was killed in a Sulu clash last week.

They were identified as Patta Salapuddin aka Patta, Asbi Salapuddin, Sayyadi Salapuddin, and Arci Salapuddin of Barangay Basakan Hadji Mohammad Ajul Basilan.

They are also suspects in the recent sea jacking incident of the MV Super Shuttle tugboat last March 23.

The surrenderees are undergoing processing and debriefing at the Basilan Provincial Police Office.

On April 27, four Abu Sayyaf members surrendered in Sulu, bringing the total to 23 bandits turning themselves in to authorities in one week.

Since January this year, 40 Abu Sayyaf members have surrendered to government forces, according to the military’s Western Mindanao Command.

President Rodrigo Duterte has ordered the military in the southern Philippines to go an all-out war against local terror groups including the Abu Sayyaf. The Armed Forces has promised to crush the Abu Sayyaf this year.

This story was updated on May 5 to include additional information from the Western Mindanao Command.