DAVAO CITY, Philippines (Mindanao Examiner / November 29, 2009) – Philippine soldiers seized six weapons from bodyguards of Governor Zaldy Ampatuan whose brother was linked to the massacre of 57 people in Maguindanao province.
The official Philippine News Agency reported that soldiers intercepted four of Ampatuan’s bodyguards near the Davao International Airport on Saturday and seized two automatic rifles and four pistols.
It said the four were escorting Ampatuan when the soldiers led by Army Colonel Oscar Lactao intercepted them at around 6 a.m. It was unknown whether the weapons were illegal of not, but the four men were said to be members of the Philippine Army and the Philippine National Police.
Ampatuan's younger brother, Andal Ampatuan Jnr, the mayor of Datu Unsay town in Maguindanao, was arrested on Thursday and charged with multiple counts of murder after being implicated in the November 23 killings of wife and supporters of rival politician Buluan town mayor Esmael Mangudadatu.
Among those killed were at least 29 journalists who were to cover Mangudadatu's filing of nomination for the gubernatorial elections next year. (Mindanao Examiner)