Usop Nasif, also known as Abu Asraf. (Photo courtesy of 1st Infantry (Tabak) Division, PA
BY BONITA L. ERMAC
ILIGAN CITY – An alleged Dawlah Islamiya subleader was killed while his wife and eight government troops were wounded in a 30-minute gunfight in Guimba, Marawi City, Lanao del Sur, early Monday morning.
The slain suspect, Usop Nasif, also known as Abu Asraf, second leader of Dawlah Islamiya in Lanao del Sur under Abu Zacaria, was neutralized in a joint police and military operation at 3:45 a.m. He was declared dead on arrival at Amai Pakpak Medical Center, the military said.
The wife of Nasif was also injured and immediately brought to the same hospital.
Seven members of the Philippine National Police and a Philippine Army trooper were wounded in the firefight.
Brig. Gen. Jose Maria Cuerpo II, 103rd Infantry Brigade commander, said Nasif was the primary suspect in the killings of three PNP and three Army personnel early this year. He was also implicated in the killing of civilians who failed to give in to their extortion demands.
Cuerpo said the hideout of the suspect was tipped off by Guimba residents.
“Troops are on pursuit against the cohorts of Nasif and we encourage the locals to report their presence so that we could stop their terrorist activities in the province,” Cuerpo added.
Maj. Gen. Generoso Ponio, 1st Infantry (Tabak) Division commander, commended the PNP and Army troops for the successful neutralization of the terror group sub leader.
“We vowed to remain relentless against these terrorist group to sustain the peace and progress that we have attained in our area of responsibility,” said Ponio.
“We also urge the public to continue to cooperate and report any threats in their locality for us to effectively perform our mandate,” Ponio added.