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Tuesday, September 1, 2009

AFP, JSOTF-P dedicate school in Taglibi

PATIKUL, Philippines -- Members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines Marine Battalion Landing Team Five along with Joint Special Operations Task Force – Philippines joined local officials to turn over an Elementary School in Taglibi Barangay, Patikul, Sulu in a ceremony Aug. 26.

The new Datu Uddin Bahjin Central Elementary School (DUBCES) was funded and renovated by JSOTF-P to replace the original building, which was burned down by Abu Sayyaf militants while they held hostage three members of the International Committee of the Red Cross earlier this year. The loss of their only elementary school profoundly impacted the Taglibi community.

Teachers like Ustadz Tusop E. Asanual, local Imam and Arabic teacher at DUBCES, were deeply grateful for the new school, expressing the hope that this project brought to teachers and students.

"For teachers, it is also a part of our accomplishments, because without our request our dreams will not come true," Asanual said.

DUBCES was reconstructed by MBLT-5 using materials provided by JSOTF-P. The total cost of this project was approximately 470,000p.

This project is the second school that has been reconstructed this year by AFP and JSOTF-P after attacks by ASG. A third reconstruction is underway for Obal school in Sumisip, Basilan. Projects like these bring hope and security to communities that have been terrorized by local militants.

Following the ceremony, MBLT-5 soldiers also handed out books to the school children.

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