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Philippines: February 1, 2002

Philippine Scout Rangers said they spotted the two female hostages of the Abu Sayyaf during a clash with the rebels last week. Many Filipino army officers are upset that American special forces have been sent to work with them, feeling that this reflects poorly on their ability to catch the Abu Sayyaf. But the elite Scout Rangers appear eager to work with what they continue their peers, the American Special Forces. The regular Filipino army officers have been criticized for being inept and, in one case, taking a bribe to allow Abu Sayyaf to escape. Meanwhile, in the north, an American MC-130 aircraft was fired at from the ground and hit by two bullets.