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AFP vows 24/7 operation vs ASG

Incoming Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Ricardo Visaya has vowed to implement a 24/7 operation to hunt down the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) when he assumes post on July 1.

“As far as I am concerned, I will fight them (ASG) 24/7,” Visaya told reporters in an interview at Camp Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo.

Visaya said he would like to defeat the Abu Sayyaf the fastest way and that a 24-hours-a-day operation can be the best option to fight them.

Focus of the campaign will be in the municipality of Jolo at the island province of Sulu, he added.

According to Visaya, the government has enough resources for his proposed “24/7 fight” against the militant group, noting that 11 battalions or approximately 5,500 troops are currently deployed in Sulu.

He added that more military equipment will be sent to these areas in support to the 24/7 operation, which will see soldiers running after the ASG even at night time.

Also part of the comprehensive plan is the rescue of all the hostages from the hands of the ASG.

“As much as possible, we’ve to continue efforts to rescue all the hostages. We also support other channels such as negotiation without ransom for their safe release,” he said. (ELENA ABEN)