The gunfights reportedly took place near a school and a mosque, where some MNLF snipers were spotted. The mosque was several blocks away from the office of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) where some soldiers are stationed.
Around 170 civilians are still being kept hostage by members of the Nur Misuari-led faction of the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) in Zamboanga City, according to Mayor Maria Isabelle Climaco.
Some MNLF rebels also fired mortars at the Zamboanga City port, according to the Philippine Coast Guard.
Climaco said the city government is leaving it up to the military and the police to conduct negotiations with the MNLF amid the escalating tension in the city. The MNLF claims that the government already abandoned the talks in favor of the peace deal with its breakaway faction, the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF).
200 MNLF rebels
Climaco said around 200 MNLF rebels are currently roaming in at least 4 barangays of the city. The city has 98 barangays.