The Tausug soldier who was beheaded by his Abu Sayyaf captors in Sulu was a hero of the “Zamboanga Siege” in 2013.
S/Sgt Anni Siraji was “one professional soldier” who defended Zamboanga towards assaults by a faction of the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) loyal to its founding chair Nur Misuari, in keeping with Col. Jemar Aseron, a former commander of the Army’s 32nd Infantry Battalion.
Siraji, a former MNLF member himself, was built-in into the navy when a peace pact was signed between the insurgent group and the federal government in 1996.
Aseron stated that in the course of the siege, Siraji was deployed to guard authorities institutions in Barangay Santa Barbara.
“They were detailed [to] the Hall of Justice and elementary school in Santa Barbara. He fought alongside our regular troops,” he stated.
“It’s a pity that Siraji, who was doing community peace work in Sulu, was beheaded,” Aseron stated.
The soldier, who was kidnapped in Patikul, Sulu, on April 20, is the seventh sufferer of beheadings in Sulu prior to now two years. Three foreigners (two Canadians and a German) and three different Filipinos have been beheaded since 2015.
On Monday, Malacañang condemned the beheading of Siraji, whereas two senators referred to as for an all-out warfare towards the bandit group, which lately clashed with the navy in Bohol province.
“I hope the President declares an all-out war on them. Wipe [them] out,” Senate Majority Leader Vicente Sotto III stated.
Sen. Panfilo Lacson referred to as for the creation of a gaggle solely to convey down the bandits.
“It will do nothing except eat Abu Sayyaf [for] breakfast, lunch and dinner,” he stated.
In an announcement, presidential spokesperson Ernesto Abella stated the stays of Siraji have been discovered within the neighborhood of Sitio Kan Suil, Barangay Tagbili in Patikul, Sulu, on April 23.
“While S/Sgt. Siraji was a soldier, he was an MNLF member who decided to trade his rifle as a fighter to become a peacemaker and agent of development to his fellow Tausugs,” Abella stated.
He assured the household of Siraji that the federal government wouldn’t cease till justice was served.
Zamboanga City Mayor Maria Isabelle Climaco Salazar prolonged her sympathy to the household, including that the town authorities would assist them.
“Siraji was one of the heroes of the 2013 Zamboanga siege, who risked his life in defense of Zamboanga City, and he will be forever remembered,” Salazar stated.
The beheading has sparked outrage amongst Bangsamoro individuals.
Habib Mudjahab Hashim, chair of the MNLF Islamic Command Council, condemned the beheading of any captive, Muslim or Christian.
“It is against the principle of any war. We can only appeal to the Abu Sayyaf to please desist from such actions, which are against the Islamic principles of warfare. We are also planning to talk to them about peace, not surrender,” Hashim stated.
The spiritual Darul Ifta (House of Opinion) of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) described as “inhuman and un-Islamic” the act by the Abu Sayyaf.
“During the lifetime of the Holy Prophet Muhammad, the hypocrites ‘Munafiqoun’ of Madinah were the worst enemy of Islam but none among them were beheaded by the Muslims, all the more with the innocent people,” Alih Aiyub of Darul Ifta stated.
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