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10月18日のまにら新聞から

"Mopping up operations" remain in Marawi: Ano

[ 289 words|2017.10.18|英字 (English) ]

The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) said the military operation against the remaining terrorists in Marawi will continue despite the liberation of city declared by President Rodrigo Duterte on Tuesday.

“Marawi City has been declared liberated. The small number of the remaining enemy can now be considered a law enforcement matter and does not constitute serious threat to hinder the succeeding phases of national government programs,” AFP Chief of Staff Gen. Eduardo Ano said Tuesday.

“What remains now is mopping up operations against Maute/ISIS stragglers in a small area. We can now begin the next phase which is damage assessment which is part already of rehabilitation and reconstruction,” he added.

Col. Edgard Arevalo, AFP Public Affairs Chief, said despite Duterte's declaration that Marawi is liberated the battle in the city will not stop until all hostages were rescued and remaining terrorists are neutralized.

“We have significantly degraded their tactical capability and under no circumstance will they be able to reverse the situations that have rendered them defeated,” he said.

“However, by declaring Marawi liberated today, we do not mean a complete halt in the operations. The sporadic fire fight will stop only when we have rescued the remaining hostages and we have neutralized the remaining terrorists,” he added.

In a television interview, Major Gen. Restituto Padilla, AFP spokesman, said government troops are still clearing less than two hectares area in the main battle zone of Marawi where there are more or less 30 terrorists.

He said the government forces will have to rescue more than 20 hostages held by the terrorist group which includes less than eight foreign fighters.

As of Tuesday, the number of fatalities among government forces reached to 163 while 847 terrorists were killed. Robina Asido/DMS