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Death Toll in Philippine Clashes Rises to 26

2 May 2014

The death toll from clashes between Philippine troops and Muslim militants who launched a surprise attack to regain control of a jungle training camp in a southern province has risen to 26, officials said on Thursday. Capt. Maria Rowena Muyuela, the regional military spokeswoman, said the latest field reports showed 25 Abu Sayyaf militants have been killed and 24 wounded. One Philippine marine had died and 19 were wounded. Government soldiers had captured the well-fortified militant camp, concealed by shrubs and trees in the mountains, on Monday. At least three Abu Sayyaf factions combined to stage Tuesday’s attack, but marines backed by helicopter gunships and artillery fire beat back the militants.—AP