Armed men attacked a tribal group’s security force in Maitum, Sarangani, early Saturday, injuring at least one person and forcing more than 100 people to flee, the military said.

Tomo Molok Lungoyen, a member of the T’boli tribe’s “barangay defense force,” was taken to the Diagan Cooperative Hospital for treatment, Capt. William Alfred Rodriguez, spokesman of the Army’s 1002nd Brigade, said.

Around 6:20 a.m., about 20 armed men led by Datu Ingig and Udtug Talumpa fired upon the position occupied by the barangay defense force in Sitio Kadapukan, Brgy. Tuanadatu.

The attack forced the barangay defense force to retaliate and residents of nearby Sitio Napilay, Brgy. Ticulab, to evacuate, Rodriguez said.

Forty families comprised of 127 people from Sitio Napilay are taking shelter in Ticulab proper as of 3 p.m., he said, citing figures from the Maitum Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office.

The motive for the attack was not immediately known, but Rodriguez said the gunmen were the same ones who killed Brgy. Tuanadatu kagawad Freddie Macatin, his wife, and brother on August 16.

Soldiers were sent to the area to prevent further incidents, Rodriguez said. (John Roson)

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