Al Harakat Al Islamiyya
The ASG is the smallest and most radical of the
Islamic separatist groups operating in the southern
Philippines. Some ASG members have studied or
worked in the Middle East and developed ties to
mjuahidin while fighting and training in Afghanistan.
The group split from the Moro National Liberation
Front in 1991 under the leadership of Abdurajik
Abubakar Janjalani, who was killed in a clash
with Philippine police on 18 December 1998. Press
reports place his younger brother, Khadafi Janjalani,
as the nominal leader of the group, which is composed
of several factions.
Engages in bombings, assassinations, kidnappings,
and extortion to promote an independent Islamic
state in western Mindanao and the Sulu Archipelago,
areas in the southern Philippines heavily populated
by Muslims. Raided the town of Ipil in Mindanao
in April 1995--the group's first large-scale action--and
kidnapped more than 30 foreigners, including a
US citizen, in 2000.
Believed to have about 200 core fighters, but
more than 2,000 individuals motivated by the prospect
of receiving ransom payments for foreign hostages
allegedly joined the group in August.
Location/Area of Operation
The ASG primarily operates in the southern Philippines
with members occasionally traveling to Manila,
but the group expanded its operations to Malaysia
this year when it abducted foreigners from two
Probably receives support from Islamic extremists
in the Middle East and South Asia.