10 terror suspects killed in Lake Lanao battles
MARAWI CITY — Government security forces on Monday killed 10 suspected Islamic State-inspired terrorists who were trying to sneak into the battle zone in Marawi City.
Lt. Gen. Carlito Galvez Jr., commander of the military’s Western Mindanao Command, told reporters that soldiers were able to intercept pump boats carrying members of the Maute and Abu Sayyaf groups as the terrorists attempted to enter the main battle area through Lake Lanao.
He said a firefight erupted and lasted for three hours. Ten terrorists were killed, he said.
“Pursuit operations immediately ensued between forces of the Joint Task Group Lawa and the fleeing terrorists. At 5 a.m., upon searching the area, troops were able to recover five dead bodies of the enemy, one M16 rifle and one motorized pump boat,” he said.
“One of the pump boats was also seen sinking during the pursuit operation. Patrolling soldiers and policemen are still looking for the dead bodies and sunken boat,” Galvez said.
He said the interception came with help from the local governments.
“The plan of the terrorists was earlier reported to us, that is why it was easier for patrolling special forces, riverine units and maritime policemen to detect and neutralize the movement,” he added.
“Let this be a warning to those who have the intention to escape and to enter—our troops are ready for you. We will definitely get you,” Galvez said.
Since May 23, at least 129 government troops had been killed along with 603 Abu Sayyaf and Maute terrorists in the battle for control of Marawi.
Forty-five civilians have been killed, while more than 1,728 others have been rescued from the battle zone.
Capt. Jo-Ann Petinglay, spokesperson for the Joint Task Force Marawi and Western Mindanao Command, said troops continued to recover improvised explosive devices and unexploded ordnance in the different structures in the war zone.
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