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UPDATED: 17:02, August 09, 2006
Five suspected Abu Sayyaf members captured by Philippine troops
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Five suspected Abu Sayyaf members were captured following a firefight between the group and government troops before dawn on Wednesday, the Philippine military said.

Troops from the 3rd Marine Brigade in Patikul town on the southern island of Sulu engaged the suspected Abu Sayyaf members in a 30-minute firefight around 4:30 a.m., said Bartolome Bacarro, spokesman of the Armed Forces.

An M16 rifle and a .45-caliber pistol were recovered from the militants, Bacarro said.

The capture came in the course of a military offensive started on July 31 targeting Abu Sayyaf chieftain Khadaffy Janjalani and two operatives of the Jemaah Islamiyah (JI) accused of masterminding the 2002 Bali bombings.

Both the Abu Sayyaf and JI are allegedly linked to the Al Qaida terror network.

The military earlier said they have sealed off all exit points from the main Sulu province island of Jolo, trapping Janjalani and the two JI operatives.

Source: Xinhua

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