Lift martial law in Mindanao, says Lorenzana
Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana recommended that martial law in Mindanao, implemented in 2017 due to the Marawi siege, should no longer be extended.
Lorenzana said Wednesday that his recommendation was submitted Tuesday.
"The Department of National Defense, based on the assessment conducted by the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Philippine National Police, has recommend to the President not to extend martial law in Mindanao when it expires on 31 December 2019," he said.
"Our security forces have determined that the purpose of implementing martial law has been attained and the prevailing conditions in the whole of Mindanao Island as well as the Islands of Basilan, Sulu and Tawi-tawi have greatly improved since the defeat of the Maute fighters in October 2017," he added.
Lorenzana said "the AFP believes that the Maute Group and other threat groups can no longer launch a Marawi-type attack as their forces and capabilities have significantly dwindled."
"We've also made significant strides in combating insurgency, with three Guerilla Fronts and three Pulang Bagani Command cleared and dismantled, respectively," he added.
Lorenzana also emphasized the importance of ending martial law to attract more investors in Southern Philippines.
"It's time to go back to normal and so that we can attract more investors," he said. Robina Asido/DMS