By Jim Lloyd Dongiapon
The Western Mindanao Command (Westmincom) of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) confirmed Tuesday morning that it has neutralized the spokesperson of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria-East Asia (ISIS-EA) in Maguindanao yesterday afternoon, June 6.
Westmincom identified the casualty as Abdulfatah Omar Alimuden, alias Abu Huzaifah, who was also in charge of the financial transactions of the Daulah Islamiyah-Philippines to the ISIS Central.
WestMinCom spokesperson Maj. Andrew Linao stated that intelligence and threat reports they received from the joint task force in Central Mindanao confirmed Alimuden’s position in ISIS.
Alimuden was killed during the joint operation of 601st Infantry Brigade, 40th Infantry Battalion, and intelligence units of the AFP at Crossing Salbo, Barangay Poblacion, Datu Saudi Ampatuan, Maguindanao.
However, Westmincom did not provide further information as to how he was killed or what transpired during the conduct of their operation.
Linao described the death of Alimuden as a “big blow to Daulah Islamayah Philippines on their capabilities to make more bombs and wreak havoc and terror in our society.”
Westmincom Chief Lieutenant General Alfredo Rosario, Jr. commended the troops who “successfully neutralized” Alimuden.
Alimuden is known to Maguindanao residents as Ustadz Abdulfattah Omar Abdulmaguid, 32 years old, a businessman residing at Bagan, Talayan, Maguindanao.
As per witness accounts, he was delivering materials for the Madrasah being constructed at Crossing Salbo, when he was killed inside his car by armed men riding a sport utility vehicle (SUV).
Alimuden studied Bachelor of Daawah at Mu’ata University, Kingdom of Jordan and became a memorizer (Hafiz) of the Qur’an.
He returned to the Philippines in 2018 and settled in Maguindanao, where he would marry his wife and have two children together.
His family and relatives have yet to release a statement about his death.