Palace says Marawi will never become terror hub
Malacañang on Tuesday said it was “unlikely” for the strife-torn Marawi City to be the new hub for Islamic fighters amid the ongoing clash between state forces and local terrorist Maute group.
Presidential spokesman Ernesto Abella allayed the fears of some United States lawmakers, saying the military has already foiled the plan of the Maute group to establish a caliphate in Marawi City.
“It’s unlikely for Marawi to become a new hub for IS fighters. The Philippine military has already pre-empted the Maute group from establishing a wilayah or province in Marawi,” Abella told reporters in a Palace briefing.
The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) has said the US has been providing “technical assistance” to government troops in Marawi City.
An Associated Press report said US lawmakers were also open for US to have a bigger role in the ongoing conflict.
“The role of the US in relation to IS is to provide technical assistance as prescribed by the Constitution and we will abide by that,” Abella said. JPV/rga
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