Philippine soldiers killed three Al-Qaeda-linked extremists in a gun battle in the southern Philippines on Sunday, a military commander said. The battle with members of Abu Sayyaf, a local militant group in the strife-torn island of Basilan, was proof of the military's continuing efforts to combat terrorism even a decade after 9/11, said Colonel Alexander Macario. "This shows we have been relentless in waging war on terrorism in this part of the country," he said. Macario's anti-terror task force tracked down a band of Abu Sayyaf militants and killed three extremists, the colonel said, forcing the rest to flee the gunfight leaving the dead bodies behind. He said the band engaged by his task force was linked to a series of kidnappings in the south in recent years, including the abduction of a Sri Lankan peace activist in 2009.