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Southeast Asia, explained

Philippines terrorist zulkifli bin hir 2012Enlarge
The Philippine military said he was killed in a US-backed raid. But Zulkifli Bin Hir, a Malaysian terrorist bomb maker with a $5 million price on his head, may still be alive. (National Counterterrorism Center/Courtesy)

Just last week, military officials in the Philippines declared they'd killed this wanted terrorist -- with a $5 million U.S. bounty on his head -- in an American-backed raid.

Now they're not so sure.

Turns out they haven't recovered his corpse in the jungle camp Philippine troops barraged with explosives, according the Associated Press.

The AP reports that the body of Zulkifli bin Hir (also known as Marwan) may be so destroyed that it couldn't be identified at the scene.

But that was four days ago.

It's possible he escaped or that he was never at the camp in the first place. (Here's his U.S. National Counterterrorism Center profile.)

If Zulkifli remains alive, and can somehow prove his existence, the Philippines' pronouncement will prove highly embarrassing.

And a group of villagers -- who appear to have sniffed out the bombaker and left a tracking device at his lair -- will never collect that million-dollar head price.

http://www.globalpost.com/globalpost-blogs/southeast-asia/Zulkifli-bin-Hir

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