Isnilon Hapilon

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Isnilon Hapilon
Isnilon Totoni Hapilon.jpg
Full Name: Isnilon Totoni Hapilon
Alias: Abu Abdullah al-Filipini
Origin: The Philippines
Occupation: Leader of Abu Sayyaf
Hobby: Killing people
Goals: Turn the Philippines into a jihadist state (failed)
Crimes: War crimes
Crimes against humanity
Mass murder
Type of Villain: Terrorist Leader

Isnilon Totoni Hapilon (March 18th, 1966 - October 16th, 2017) also known by the nom de guerre Abu Abdullah al-Filipini ("Abu Abdullah the Filipino"), is a Filipino Islamist militant who is affiliated with The Islamic State. He was formerly leader of Abu Sayyaf Group before its battalions pledged their allegiance to Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. An April 2016 issue of ISIS' weekly newsletter Al Naba said that Hapilon had been appointed as "emir of all Islamic State forces in the Philippines".

Moro National Liberation Front

Hapilon joined the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) in 1985 and traveled between Sulu and Basilan. While he was with the rebel group, he took up Arabic and madrasa education again and became the spokesperson of Commander Barahama Sali in 1992. A strong military offensive in 1994 and the death of Commander Sali forced them to flee to Sampinit Complex in Sumisip, where he met Abdurajak Abubakar Janjalani.

Abu Sayyaf

Disaffected with the MNLF while in hiding in Sampinit, Hapilon joined the Abu Sayyaf group led by Abdurajak Abubakar Janjalani, who also became his religious mentor. He eventually rose through the ranks of Abu Sayyaf, becoming one of the group's leaders.

In June 2002, Hapilon and four other Abu Sayyaf leaders—Khadaffy Janjalani, Hamsiraji Marusi Sali, Aldam Tilao, and Jainal Antel Sali, Jr.—were indicted in absentia by the United States government for their role in the 2000 Dos Palmas kidnappings of seventeen Filipinos and three Americans, and the eventual beheading of one of the Americans, Guillermo Sobero. The August 2000 kidnapping of Jeffrey Schilling, and the deaths of two hostages—American missionary Martin Burnham and Filipino nurse Ediborah Yap—were also cited in the indictment. Hapilon is the only one of the five indicted who is still alive. On February 24, 2006, Hapilon was added to the FBI's Most Wanted Terrorists list, along with Janjalani and Jainal Sali, Jr. The Rewards For Justice Program of the US State Department is offering up to US$5 million (approx. 254 million Philippine pesos as of July 2017) for information leading to his capture.

In July 2002, Philippine authorities raided Hapilon's suspected hideout in Zamboanga City with the intention of arresting him. However, he managed to escape prior to their arrival. In May 2008, Hapilon was shot in the hand during a military operation in Jolo. His son, Tabari, also an Abu Sayyaf fighter, was fatally wounded.

Hapilon was wounded in April 2013, in a military offensive that killed eight other Islamist militants in Tipo-Tipo, Basilan. Hapilon sustained a "slight wound" on the head during the raid, but his followers managed to drag him off safely before the soldiers could seize control of their base.

There were US intelligence reports claiming that he may have suffered a stroke at some point.

Islamic State in the Philippines

On July 23rd, 2014; a video of Hapilon along with other masked men was uploaded to YouTube, where they swore their allegiance to Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the leader of ISIS.

On April 9October 16th, 2017 2016; Hapilon and Basilan-based commander Furuji Indama led 100 to 150 Abu Sayyaf fighters on an attack against government forces in Tipo-Tipo, Basilan. At least eighteen soldiers were killed and more than fifty other soldiers were wounded in the ten-hour shootout. Hapilon's son, Ubaida, was among the five Abu Sayyaf fighters killed in the encounter. The battle of Tipo-Tipo is currently ongoing with sporadic firefights. Government forces have been deployed to capture or kill Hapilon.

A June 21st, 2016 video by ISIS entitled "The Solid Structure" recognized Hapilon as the mujahid authorized to lead the jihadists of the Islamic State in the Philippines, and designated him as the emir for Southeast Asia. The video also called on Southeast Asian Islamist militants to travel to the Philippines and engage in jihad.

As of January 2017, ISIL acknowledged him as their member. And he is known to be in Butig, Lanao del Sur for rectifying Maute group and joins Abu Sayyaf to establish the Islamic State in the Philippines. He was later promoted to Emir of the "Philippine Province".

In May of 2017, during a joint operation of the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Philippine National Police to capture Hapilon, militants of the Maute group launched an attack in Marawi. As of this time, Isnilon is in Marawi, alongside his supporters. He is believed to be injured.

In the early morning of October 16th, 2017, he was killed by the Philippine Army in the Battle of Marawi, along with Omar Maute.