Palace: Duterte to ‘listen’ to his ‘men on the ground’ on Mindanao martial law extension
MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte would heed the advice of his “men on the ground” after National Security Adviser Hermogenes Esperon Jr. said Tuesday he would recommend that martial law in Mindanao be extended for another year.
“He will listen to those who are knowledgeable on the facts existing on the ground,” Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said in a Palace briefing.
Esperon told reporters that he would push for a one year extension of martial law in Mindanao, citing continuous rebellion in the region.
Duterte declared martial law over the entire Mindanao on May 23, 2017 after homegrown Maute terrorists attacked the Islamic City of Marawi.
On July 18, 2017, just before Duterte’s executive order declaring martial law in Mindanao expired, the President requested an extension, which Congress approved until December 31, 2017.
The President again requested for a one-year extension until December 31, 2018, which was also granted by Congress.
He again asked for another extension of martial law in Mindanao until December 31, 2019, claiming that “rebellion still persists in strife-torn Mindanao. /muf
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