Monday, March 25, 2013

47. Vat69 Bravo Commandos Recall March 1 Offensive As A Day It Rained Bullets

Vat69 Bravo Commandos Recall March 1 Offensive As A Day It Rained Bullets
KUALA LUMPUR, March 25 (Bernama) -- "It was raining bullets" was how VAT69 commandos involved in the offensive between security forces and Sulu terrorists in Lahad Datu last March 1, described the experience.

Insp Azwanazlee Saffiai, 33, said two teams, the Special Action Unit VAT 69 Bravo of which he was a member, and a security unit, Charlie, each of which comprised 34 personnel and officers, were in the thick of the confrontation, motivated by an attempt by the terrorists to ambush Charlie.

"While attempting to ambush Charlie, the terrorists had entered our sector and warned us to leave the area. But we stood our ground and waited for the order to shoot from our commander.

"They moved closer and at about 10 meters away started firing at us," he told Bernama, here today, when recalling the incident.

In the confrontation at a swampy oil palm plantation that went on for one hour, ASP Zulkifli Mamat, 29, and Sgt Sabaruddin Daud, 46, were killed while 15 of the terrorists were shot dead by the security forces.

Azwanazlee said that initially the terrorist group could not be overpowered despite being shot repeatedly, and we suspected they could be using 'supernatural powers' and only when the order to aim at their heads was given did we managed to gun them down.

Meanwhile, Cpl Muhammad Imran Abd Talib, 28, who was in the Alpha sector that was deployed to Kampung Tanduo, said he advanced as close as two meters to bring down the enemies.

"My mates and I were preparing food when we heard shots from where the Bravo sector was stationed," said the son of a former commando.

According to him, the oil palm trees fortunately served to protect them: "Fighting in the forest is not the same as in the plantation and there are not many houses. The view is wider and we can be easily seen by the enemy.

"After the fight I saw that our place of shelter was full of gunshot marks. I'm thankful that none of the bullets hit me," he said.

Muhammad Imran said he was forced to postpone his engagement but was glad to be given an opportunity to serve and defend the country.


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