Abu Sayyaf Group leader Isnilon Hapilon has been seriously wounded as military artillery pounded suspected bandit hideouts in Butig, Lanao Del Sur.
No less than AFP chief of staff General Eduardo Año confirmed the report to GMA News' Jun Veneracion.
"May tama siya... grabe," Año was quoted as saying on "24 Oras" Friday.
An excerpt of a military report said Hapilon had been observed to be weakening and even lost consciousness several times.
It added that Hapilon was being carried by four persons.
Local government officials are calling for a permanent military detachment in the area to keep terrorist groups from coming back after a series of military attacks.
The operation was launched Thursday after the military received information that Hapilon was in Butig.
In November last year, the Maute group raised a black flag at the old municipal building in Butig, pledging allegiance to ISIS
Hapilon is the Abu Sayyaf's No. 2 man, second to bandit leader Radullan Sahiron.
The United States has put up a $5-million reward to bring Hapilon to the authorities. —Anna Felicia Bajo/NB, GMA News