On the morning of August 6, 2021, elements of the 40th Infantry Battalion welcomed 13 members of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters who voluntarily surrendered to the government.
The surrendering BIFF individuals, according to Lt. Gen. Corleto Vinluan, Jr., Commander of Western Mindanao Command, are members of the Karialan Faction, which has been involved in multiple crimes against government forces and civilians.
The surrender of the 13 is the consequence of increased intelligence operations and discussions, according to Lt. Col. Edwin Alburo, Commander of the 40th Infantry Battalion.
At the 40IB headquarters in Barangay Tual, President Quirino, Sultan Kudarat, the 13 surrendered and gave up their rifles to Lt. Col. Alburo.
The following firearms and ammunition were turned over: one M1 Garand rifle with one clip and four rounds cartridge of cal. 30 ball, one rocket-propelled grenade with two rounds cartridge of RPG heat, one Eddys US rifle with two rounds cartridges of 7.62mm ball, three M14 rifles, one sub-machine gun, two M79 rifles with one round of 40mm high explosive each, one cal. 50 with seven rounds cartridge of cal. 50 ball, one rocket-propelled grenade, one steel magazine with six rounds cartridge of 7.62mm ball, one Thomson and one steel magazine with three rounds cartridge of 9mm ball, and one Thonram and one steel magazine with five rounds of 9mm ball.
The surrendered individuals were then brought to Brig. Gen. Roy Galido, Commander of the 601st Infantry Brigade, at the 601Bde headquarters in Barangay Kalandagan, Tacurong City, the same province.
Brig. Gen. Galido greeted the former violent extremists and assured them that after their custodial debriefing, they will be offered reintegration packages.
Meanwhile, Commander of Joint Task Force Central, Maj. Gen. Juvymax Uy, praised the troops for aiding the smooth surrender of the BIFF members.
“Your hard work has paid off,” said Maj. Gen. Uy.
146 BIFF personalities have been neutralized by Joint Task Force Central since January 2021, with 69 killed, 74 surrendered, and three captured.
“May these numbers of neutralized personalities inspire the remaining fighters to yield to the government forces,” said Lt. Gen. Vinluan, Jr.
The 40IB is currently in charge of the turned-over firearms for documentation and safekeeping.