Manila: At least 30 Philippine policemen were killed in a gun battle with alleged members of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters and Moro Islamic Liberation Front in the province of Maguindanao today.
Police said the clashes occurred in the early hours of the day in Mamasapano town.
Restituto Padilla, spokesperson of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, said army soldiers were later deployed to retrieve the body of the slain policemen. He said the military retrieved bodies of "nine out of the more than 30 (policemen) killed".
While the military helped in extricating police casualties, the policemen were conducting operations against lawless elements and carrying out a warrant of arrest, Padilla added.