Jemaah Islamiyah, Abu Sayyaf now merged, says anti-terror expert

The Jemaah Islamiyah (JI) regional terror network and the local Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) in the Sulu Archipelago are already so integrated they operate almost as one organization, according to an international counterterrorism expert. The link between the JI and the ASG is “almost complete,” said Professor Rohan Gunarathna, head of the management staff of the International Center for Political Violence and Terrorism Research in Singapore. “They co-exist, they work together, their leaders operate together as one organization. The integration of these two structures is almost complete,” said Gunarathna, one of the resource speakers at the two-day intelligence exchange among military analysts in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) which concluded Wednesday.

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