At least nine Muslim rebels were killed in two days of fighting in the southern Philippines, a regional army operations officer said Monday.
Captain Louie Aguinaldo said the fighting erupted Sunday afternoon and lasted until Monday morning in Datu Saudi Ampatuan town in Maguindanao province, 960 kilometres south of Manila, reported dpa.
Aguinaldo said Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) rebels attempted to return to their camp that was occupied by soldiers, triggering an intense firefight.
"There were many bloodstains in the MILF position, which was hit by our cannons," he said. "We got reports that at least nine MILF rebels were killed in the fighting."
Aguinaldo said one soldier was wounded in the fighting.
Fighting between the MILF and the military escalated in August when the Supreme Court stopped the signing of a territory agreement between the rebel group and the Philippine government.
The agreement would have expanded the existing Muslim autonomous region on the southern island of Mindanao.
More than 200 people, including civilians, were killed in subsequent clashes and more than 500,000 displaced at the height of the fighting in August.