Six militants killed in Philippines

Manila: At least six Abu Sayyaf militants were killed and 14 soldiers injured in a clash in the Philippines, a military statement said on Friday.

The troops were on a combat operation when they caught up with around 100 Abu Sayyaf militants in Sulu province, Xinhua news agency quoted a military spokesman as saying.

The battalion was directed to conduct "pursuit and clearing operations" after militants withdrew toward the west, the spokesman said.

The slain militants were involved in the abduction of four persons from Samal last September. Two of the victims, Canadians John Ridsdel and Robert Hall were beheaded by Abu Sayyaf terrorists.