31 Jan '14, 11am

Child soldiers among 53 dead as Philippine troops overrun rebels

Three child soldiers recruited by hardline Muslim rebels in the Philippines were among 53 people killed in a five-day military offensive in the restive south, an official said Friday. Regional spokesman Colonel Dickson Hermoso said the offensive against fighters of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) group in the strife-torn southern island of Mindanao had resulted in the deaths of 52 rebels, including the children, and one soldier. "They are employing child soldiers with guns and camouflage uniforms. When we encounter them, we cannot discriminate if they are children or not," he told AFP. The military offensive came after the main Muslim rebel group, the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), successfully concluded peace talks with government negotiators last week aimed at ending a decades-long insurgency that has killed tens of thousands. The BIFF is a small gr...

Full article: http://sg.news.yahoo.com/child-soldiers-among-53-dead-phi...

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