15 killed in clash in southern Philippines
One soldier and 14 Muslim rebels were killed Monday in a clash in the southern Philippines, a regional military spokesman said, reported dpa.
Major Randolph Cabangbang said the fighting erupted when soldiers encountered Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) rebels in Mamasapano town in Maguindanao province, 960 kilometres south of Manila.
Cabangbang said four soldiers and four MILF rebels were also wounded in the fighting the lasted for more than two hours.
Eight of the rebel fatalities have been identified, according to Cabangbang.
Clashes between government troops and MILF rebels have escalated in August after the Supreme Court stopped a territory deal that would have expanded that existing autonomous Muslim region in Mindanao Island.
More than 200 people have been killed and more than 500,000 displaced in subsequent clashes.