MANILA(AP): Two top Indonesian terror suspects were involved in deadly clashes between Muslim insurgents and army soldiers in the southern Philippines last week, the military chief said Sunday.

The Philippine military's chief of staff, Gen. Hermogenes Esperon, said the two - Umar Patek and Dulmatin - provided unspecified help to Abu Sayyaf militants and other insurgents who killed 25 soldiers Thursday in a road ambush and subsequent fightingon the southern island of Jolo. Dulmatin goes by a single name.

"We have a report that they (Patek and Dulmatin) were in the encounters," Esperon told reporters. He did not elaborate.

The two Indonesians would be among the insurgents troops hunt for in the next few days, he said.

Dulmatin and Patek have reportedly been given sanctuary in Jolo by Abu Sayyaf commanders Radulan Sahiron and Umbra Jumdail, whose forces, along with Moro National Liberation Front guerrillas, killed the 25 soldiers.

Jumdail's son and a key Sahiron aide were among those killed in Thursday's clashes in the Maimbung township on Jolo, Esperon said. (***)
"People say funny things......."

Peter Kay