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Mrs. Suu Kyi was freed after Myanmar held elections in 2010.

PHILIPPINES

Filipino extremists stage more attacks

MANILA — Al Qaeda-linked militants in the Philippines have staged more attacks in the past four years despite many battlefield setbacks, a military report said Thursday, blaming a failure of authorities to isolate the terrorists from their supporters.

The Abu Sayyaf, which has long been blacklisted by Washington as a terror group, launched 74 attacks last year, 19 percent more than in 2010.

The report, which assesses the first year of the government’s new counterinsurgency program, says poverty and the large number of unlicensed firearms in the southern provinces of Sulu and Basilan, where the Abu Sayyaf has jungle strongholds, have allowed the militants to survive and continue to sow terror.

Attacks by the Abu Sayyaf, which has 381 armed fighters, have risen steadily since 2007, when it mounted 31 assaults, despite the capture and killing of many Abu Sayyaf commanders and fighters in U.S.-backed military offensives, the military said.

Last year’s attacks included 17 kidnappings for ransom, 18 armed assaults and 16 bombings, the military said.

A bomb strapped to a parked motorcycle exploded Thursday in Basilan’s capital city of Isabela, wounding a motorist, police said. The blast also damaged two passing vehicles, including one carrying the city’s vice mayor, who was not hurt.

• From wire dispatches and staff reports

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