Duterte in Trouble


Carl Miller

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CNN)Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte has cut short an official visit to Moscow after deadly clashes erupted between Filipino government troops and Islamist militants Tuesday in the southern city of Marawi.

ISIS' media wing, Amaq Agency, put out a statement announcing that "fighters of the Islamic State launch a wide-scale offensive on positions of Philippine troops in the city of Marawi."

Speaking from Moscow, Philippines Foreign Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano said that the violence in Mindanao, one of the Philippines' southernmost islands, was Duterte's priority, despite the high-profile visit to Moscow and St. Petersburg.

"(The Russians) understand that the security of the Filipino people, especially in Marawi and in Mindanao, is a priority," Cayetano said.

"They understand that the presence of the president, President Duterte, is essential in the Philippines. But I will be staying behind. The agreements will be signed."

Philippines President Duterte meets his Russian counterpart in Moscow, May 23.

The outbreak of violence has prompted Duterte to declare martial law throughout both the city of Marawi and the wider island of Mindanao, of which Marawi is a part.

Clashes between government forces and the Maute group, an Islamist militant organization based in Mindanao, began in Marawi, a city of about 200,000 people about 2 p.m. local time Tuesday.

Presidential spokesman Ernesto Abella confirmed that the fighters had taken over several government buildings in the city, and had torched others, including a church, a school and the city jail. It was not clear from his statement how damaged the buildings were by the arson.

Mindanao is home to a sizable Muslim population, in contrast to the overwhelmingly Catholic remainder of the country.

The militants had reportedly taken over a medical center and replaced the Philippines flag with a black, ISIS-style banner.

Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) spokesman Lt. Col. Jo-Ar Herrera said that Isnilon Hapilon, the leader of the Abu Sayyaf Group, which has pledged allegiance to ISIS, was among the armed men.

Casualties

Three government troops had died in the fighting, said Abella, and 12 were injured. Martial law was declared about 10 p.m. local time, and reinforcements were expected.

"Our operation is still ongoing in Marawi City and sporadic fighting is still continuing," a statement from the Armed Forces of the Philippines said.

"The joint AFP-PNP team that is after Isnilon Hapilon and his cohorts is determined to finish him off," the statement said.

Residents were sheltering in their houses overnight, said Abella. Social media users in the city posted photos online that claimed to show residents attempting to evacuate the city Wednesday morning.
 

Carl Miller

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980
Let me ask you a question. How is the situation right now in your domain? No need to tell us where you live. Although the current state of affairs do you still have some security to hang outside for a while? Is the situation getting worse or does it tend to settle down? Did the schools reopen the doors to the students?
 

Miscellaneous

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Nov 21, 2015
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Let me ask you a question. How is the situation right now in your domain? No need to tell us where you live. Although the current state of affairs do you still have some security to hang outside for a while? Is the situation getting worse or does it tend to settle down? Did the schools reopen the doors to the students?
1. Pretty fine. Feels like every other day except there's less cars in the street. It's fine. I live in Davao. The city Duterte really loves. 2. I saw a patrol car near my subdivision and the usual places were the police usually are if it counts as security but otherwise, like I said before it feels like every other day except there's less cars on the road. 3. I got bored of keeping up with the news already so I don't know if the situation about the terrorists have subsided or not. 4. School here doesn't start until June. I heard some will open at August. Probably because they haven't implement the government program k to 12 education fully yet. Idk.
 

Miscellaneous

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It looks like the war in Marawi isn't gonna stop anytime soon. Apparently most of the rebels came from Malaysia, Indonesia, one from Pakistan and one from Saudi Arabia... Wow so international. Just hearing that makes me wonder if they are being supported by a third party but I'm gonna instantly think of the US because you know... They help create ISIS and who knows if the US is taking drastic measures now that our current president isn't pro-American and isn't their puppet unlike our previous ones..

The government recruited 400 marines hours ago. The priest that was being held hostage was said to be reading from a script and said there were 200 civilian hostages. I guess from his statement alone in the video sounded off because how can a hostage know exactly how many fellow hostages he has with him? And he said that in English which supports the theory that there are foreign terrorists in the country.

Oh and I recieved word that school here will start at June 19 :D

‘They looked like Arabs, handsome, fair-skinned’
'Foreign jihadis fighting with Maute in Marawi'
Propaganda shows Marawi priest echoing kidnappers' demand
 
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