7 Filipino marines killed, 21 wounded in clash

By the Associated Press | July 28, 2011 | 2:24 AM EDT

MANILA, Philippines (AP) — A Philippine military official says seven marines were killed and 21 others were wounded in a fierce jungle clash with a large group of al-Qaida-linked Abu Sayyaf militants.

Regional military spokesman Lt. Col. Randolph Cabangbang says the platoon of marines managed to penetrate a jungle encampment of more than 50 Abu Sayyaf militants in mountainous Patikul township in southern Sulu province when a gunbattle erupted early Thursday.

Cabangbang says it was not immediately clear if there were casualties among the militants, who were led by Radulan Sahuran, a one-armed commander long wanted by U.S. and Philippine authorities for a string of terrorist attacks.