BIFF attacks MILF in Maguindanao Sur
BY AL JACINTO
The Manila Times
ZAMBOANGA CITY: Members of the pro-ISIS group Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) ambushed a group of rival Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) members, setting off a roadside bomb followed by a volley of automatic GUNfiRE THAT KILLED AT LEAST TWO PEOPLE IN southern Philippines. Four other MILF members were also wounded in the attack staged late Monday in Mamasapano town, a stronghold of the former rebel group in Maguindanao del Sur province. The ambush sparked a gunfight between the two groups before the BIFF withdrew under cover of darkness. It was not immediately known whether the BIFF had suffered casualties, but the Philippine Army confirmed the fighting and said the clashes were between the group of BIFF commander Abdulkarim Lumbaton and MILF commander Tikaw of the 105th Base Command. The military did not say what triggered the ambush. Murad Ebrahim, MILF chieftain and currently the governor of the Muslim autonomous region, has not released any statement on the fighting. The BIFF is a breakaway faction of the MILF, which signed a peace deal with the Philippine government on March 27, 2014. The Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro followed the signing of the accord and marked the end of more than four decades of conflict in the troubled region. The agreement covers details of the creation of a new self-governing political entity called Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, which replaced the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.