ZAMBOANGA CITY, the Philippines, Aug. 10 (Xinhua) -- At least seven people were killed, including two government's soldiers and five Abu Sayyaf members, when marines encountered Thursday dawn a group of Abu Sayyaf gunmen in a town of Sulu island in southern Philippines, a security official said.
A marine was also wounded during the encounter where troops recovered several high-powered rifles, including a super sniper rifle from the Abu Sayyaf group.
The encounter came amid threat issued by the Abu Sayyaf to behead four local captive laborers if their 3 million pesos (59,000 U.S. dollars) ransom for the victims will not be delivered before 3 p.m. local time Thursday in the jungle of Sulu.
Brig. Gen. Cirilito Sobejana, Joint Task Force Sulu (JTFS), said his marine unit was on pursuit and rescue operation when they clashed with 30 heavily armed bandits about 4 a.m. local time at Sitio Langhub, Pang Village in the town of Kalingalang Caluang.
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