Philippine militant behind suicide attacks killed

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Philippine military officials say troops have killed a "high-value" Filipino militant who acted as a key link of the Islamic State group to local jihadists and helped set up a series of deadly suicide attacks in the south that have alarmed the region.

The officials say Talha Jumsah, who used the nom de guerre Abu Talha, was killed Friday in a clash with government forces in the jungles of Patikul town in Sulu province, which has been rocked by three deadly suicide bombings this year.

The suicide attacks started with a January 27 bombing of a Roman Catholic cathedral that left 23 people dead.

Military officials said Saturday that Talha served as a bomb-making instructor and Arabic translator, and facilitated the transfer of foreign funds for the suicide attacks.

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