Senate, House allow 1-year martial law extension in Mindanao
After more than four hours of debate, Congress overwhelmingly granted President Rodrigo Duterte’s request to extend martial law in the whole of Mindanao for a period of one year – from January 1, 2018 up to December 31, 2018.
Voting 240-27 with no abstention during the special joint session on Wednesday, Congress authorized the extension of martial rule in the southern region for the second time.
The Senate voted 14-4 while the House of Representatives voted 226-23 in favor of the martial law extension.
Last May 23, Mr. Duterte imposed martial law in Mindanao through Proclamation 216 after the Islamic State-inspired Maute terrorist group attacked Marawi City and attempted to establish a caliphate there. Correspondingly, the presidential directive suspended the writ of habeas corpus in Mindanao.
Almost two months later, Congress granted President Duterte’s request to extend martial rule in Mindanao until December 31, 2017.
Then on Monday, December 11, or 20 days before the initial extension expires, Mr. Duterte once again asked Congress to extend martial law in Mindanao for another year, citing persistent threats of terrorism and rebellion in the region.
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