Soldiers seize back college from Marawi terrorists
MARAWI CITY — Government security forces on Monday have taken control of the Dansalan College, which was used as a lair of Islamic State-inspired terrorists.
Lt. Col. Jo-Ar Herrera, Joint Task Force Marawi spokesperson, said the school was used to serve as the terrorists’ machine gun nest and snipers’ vantage position.
“Soldiers are gradually taking over terrorist-held structures as enemy strong points fall one by one to government forces. Troops recovered a cal .50 heavy machine-gun and 14 other high powered firearms as they wrest control of the school,” he said.
He said since May 23, around 410 firearms were recovered by operating troops in the clearing operations.
“A cadaver of a foreign-looking individual was also recovered by troops. It is believed that it is one of the reported foreign fighters from Singapore. A total of 11 suspected foreign fighters have been reportedly killed so far,” he said.
“It will just be a matter of time and our soldiers will fully liberate Marawi from terrorists and criminal gangs who brought mayhem to this city. We owe this to our Maranao brothers and sisters. Our soldiers fully know what is at stake and we will strive together to neutralize these criminals in order to bring peace and normalcy in Marawi,” said Brig. Gen. Rolando Joselito Bautista, commander of JTF Marawi.
Bautista said a total of 1,717 trapped civilians have been rescued by troops from the war zone since fighting erupted on May 23.
“Daily stream of civilians are being rescued while battle rages and as government forces continue to gain ground and foothold on enemy strongholds,” he said.
Lt. Gen. Carlito Galvez Jr., commander of Western Mindanao Command, said the clearing operations put utmost consideration on the safety of trapped civilians.
“Our soldiers together with our civilian counterparts will do everything in their power to locate more trapped civilians, and device steps to rescue as many as possible,” he said.
He said about 300 to 500 civilians were still trapped in the conflict area as of Tuesday (July 4). SFM
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