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Abu Sayyaf no longer a threat to Region 7

CEBU CITY – The remaining Abu Sayyaf Group members on the run in Bohol no longer pose a threat to Central Visayas or Region 7, a joint statement released by the Police Regional Office 7 and the Central Command of the Armed Forces of the Philippines said.

PRO 7 director Chief Supt. Noli G. Taliño and Centcom commander Lt. Gen. Oscar Lactao said the combined forces of the AFP and PNP are now committed to finishing the job and finally arrest the remaining ASG members who are now in the run for their lives, injured and hungry, in Bohol.

“With their capabilities significantly diminished in leadership and resources, they no longer pose a threat to Central Visayas,” the joint statement said.

Taliño and Lactao urged the public to remain calm and vigilant and immediately report any relevant information to the nearest police station or any military unit so that they could act on it promptly and appropriately.

They also lauded the vigilance of the public, which was a major key in the successful neutralization of ASG members who entered Bohol with plans to sow terror.

“The support and cooperation that the government forces are receiving from the public is indispensable in the neutralization of Abu Sayyaf members who entered Inabanga, Bohol last April 11, 2017, and the arrest of their cohorts,” they said.

They added that the arrest of Reenor Lou Dongon, also known as “Kudri” and “Renren,” a known bomb maker who has pending warrants of arrest for illegal possession of firearms and double murder, at a PNP-AFP checkpoint a few meters away from the encounter site was another blow to the nefarious plot of the lawless armed group.

“The involvement in the said plot of Supt. Maria Cristina Nobleza, who was with the suspect during the arrest, is now being investigated. It was her own personal decision to be in the company of a fugitive and for that she, being a law enforcer, will be held accountable for her actions,” they said.

The PNP and the AFP advised the public to refrain from posting unvalidated information in various social media platforms and disseminating inaccurate text messages to avoid casting fear and panic among the people.
(Mars W. Mosqueda Jr.)