27 Feb 2010

Islamic militants slay 11 in village raid

10:10 pm on 27 February 2010

Officials in the Philippines say Islamic militants linked to al Qaeda have raided a village on a remote southern island, torching houses and killing 11 people.

The attack by about 70 Abu Sayyaf rebels was reportedly in revenge for the death of senior leader Albader Parad and five others on nearby Jolo island last week.

An army spokesperson says troops have rushed to reinforce a civilian militia force defending Tubigan village, on the southern island of Basilan.

Lieutenant Steffani Cacho says 10 civilians and a member of the local militia were killed when the rebels started spraying houses with automatic gunfire.

She says nearly 20 others were wounded, including four children who suffered third-degree burns.

The ABC reports that the military had been expecting the small but violent Abu Sayyaf group, known for kidnappings, bombings and beheadings, to launch retaliatory attacks for Parad's death.