Philippines' Duterte not aware of US support against Islamists in Marawi
Philippines' Duterte not aware of US support against Islamists in Marawi
Malaysia's most wanted terrorist Dr Mahmud Ahmad is believed to have been killed in fighting in Marawi on Mindanao island. REUTERS pic
26 June, 2017, 14:25
The US embassy in Manila said in a statement Saturday that US Special Operations Forces are providing support to the Philippine military in Marawi, but wouldn't discuss specifics.
The Philippines' army is trying to oust hundreds of fighters who have sworn allegiance to ISIS after entering the city of Marawi, located in the south of the Philippines.
An airstrike rips through a suspected militant hideout in Marawi on Friday. Nandiyan na rin. It could save lives. The affected is more or less 10, where they can manoeuvre. They also kidnapped and killed innocent civilians. The anti-American rhetoric seems to have cooled since Barack Obama left and Donald Trump has made a push to re-establish good relations with the Philippines. Duterte, after the assumption of President Donald Trump, called the new United States leader his "friend". There have been previous reports of al-Baghdadi's death.
After the siege of Muslim-majority Marawi City began, Duterte declared martial law in Mindanao, with support from allies in the Congress. Gen. Restituto Padilla said.
Authorities have detained Cayamora and Farhana Maute, parents of brothers Omarkhayam and Abdullah who are leading Maute group attacks in Marawi City.
Governments across the region have been on high alert since Islamic State-linked militants, mostly from Southeast Asian countries, overran a city in the southern Philippines about three weeks ago.
The ISIS-inspired local rebel groups occupied the Philhealth Office and Salam Hospital in Barangay Lilod. He earlier said the group planned to burn the city.
For almost three weeks, they had survived on dried noodles, canned goods and rice, and had to go on "suicide missions" at night to find water, ducking militants who were at times just a few metres away. The military has said the arrest was meant to preempt a bigger attack by the Islamist militants during the start of the holy Muslim month of Ramadan.
Duterte on Sunday distanced himself from United States military cooperation, saying the decision was made by the Defense Department.
The Filipino president did not comment on allegations that Philippines military officials bypassed his authority to request assistance from US Special Forces, instead remarking that, "our soldiers are pro-American, that I can not deny".
Battle rages on after three weeks in the Philippines as government forces are attempting to quell an Islamic State-affiliated militant uprising.
It was believed that there are about 300 to 500 residents, who are staying inside their homes, Herrera said.
"I said I did not even know that the American government has been providing technical assistance", the President told reporters in Cagayan de Oro City. A US Orion surveillance aircraft has been seen flying over the battlefield.
"We have conducted intelligence, territorial and combat operations to anticipate it".
"We have standing protocols which are already in place under the Mutual Defense Board-Security Engagement Board with the US under the purview of the PHL-US Mutual Defense Treaty of 1951".
"Within that agreement, we have what we call agreed actions, activities". Peace advocates and human rights activists used the holiday attend marches to condemn the government's policies on issues like the martial law and USA military intervention in Mindanao. "We could not reach them, so they remain unaccounted for to date", he added.
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