Malaysian army attacks Filipino militants

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The Independent Online

The army have unleashed air strikes and mortar attacks on nearly 200 Filipinos occupying a remote coastal village in Borneo.

The assault on the village in Lahad Datu district in Sabah state, was the latest clash in a three-week siege that has so far killed 27 people, including eight Malaysian police officers and 19 Filipino gunmen.

The Filipino men have refused to leave the area, staking a long-dormant claim to Malaysia's state of Sabah, which they insist is their ancestral birthright.

The armed men had shocked the Malaysian government and neighbouring Philippines last month when they slipped past naval patrols to storm the village.