Thursday eyed to clear Marawi of armed group: Lorenzana
The government is targeting to clear the city of Marawi from Maute-ISIS terrorist group members by Thursday, Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said Monday.
“Yes, I am updated regularly. Timetable is one week from May 25,” Lorenzana said.
Lorenzana said government forces are still on track on meeting its timeline to clear the city. “Yes, we are on track,” he said.
Col. Edgard Arevalo, Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) public affairs chief, said the military is hoping to clear the city within a matter of days.
“We are hoping in a matter of days we could finish that. However as I said it still depends on the situation on the ground, because as days go by there are intervening factors,” he said.
Brig. Gen. Restituto Padilla, Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) spokesman confirmed that based on their latest data the number of fatalities on enemy side is still stand at 61 with 42 body count and 19 reported by witnesses.
He said so far a total of 15 soldiers and three policemen were killed and 61 troops and three cops were wounded because of the on-going combat operation in the city.
Padilla also mentioned that the government have so far recovered a total of 37 high powered firearms and four low powered firearms from the terrorist.
Myrna Jo Henry, Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao government's Humanitarian Emergency Action and Response Team (ARMM-HEART) Public Affairs Officer said based on their latest data the number of displaced people has reached to nearly half of the total population of Marawi City.
She said a total of 84,450 people or 17,007 families have evacuated to Iligan City and other host municipalities of Lanao del Sur.
Henry also mentioned there are other families who have reached the area of Cagayan de Oro and Cotabato City.
She said the number of displaced people is fluctuating because some evacuees were taken by the relatives from the evacuation centers.
Henry said based on their record a total of 1,483 people were rescued or helped by the government forces to leave the city. Robina Asido/DMS