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Philippines Kills 15 Al Qaeda-Linked Militants

Reports from the Philippines say military forces have killed 15 alleged militants from Al-Qaeda-linked groups.

The military says air strikes against the suspected militants took place on Jolo Island, in the south of the country, on February 2.

The island is known as a militant stronghold.

Officials said two Jemaah Islamiyah leaders and one Abu Sayyaf leader were among those killed.

The military says that those killed are believed to include Malaysian bomb expert Zulkipli Bin Hir, alias Marwan, and Singaporean Muhammad Ali bin Abd Al-Rahman, or Mauiyah.

Forensic investigators could not immediately approach the heavily-forested militant camp to identify the bodies.

Hundreds of U.S. special forces troops have been stationed in the southern Philippines for the last decade to help train Filipinos on combatting Islamic militants.

Compiled from agency reports