Philippines Invasion Update

Remember last Wednesday’s piece on Islamic State-affiliated fighters invading Marawi City in the Philippines? How are things looking there?

Much worse:

A Muslim militant group linked to ISIS attacked and took control of parts of Marawi city on Mindanao island in the southern Philippines last week. Philippine government troops have been evacuating civilians and fighting back, with soldiers on the ground and attack aircraft in the sky. Gunmen from local terrorist groups with ties to ISIS, called the Maute Group and Abu Sayyaf, overran the city, leading President Rodrigo Duterte to declare 60 days of martial law in Mindanao, as 85,000 residents fled to evacuation centers. While the government says it has now regained control of most of the city, fighting continues, and the death toll has climbed to nearly 100.

Seems like last week’s “at least 15 gunman” may be on the low side.

And the Maute fighters are bringing the Islamic State’s usual tidings of light and joy:

In Marawi City, the Maute showed that it can be as brutal as ISIS. It executed eight city residents and dumped their bodies into the ravine, their hands tied behind their backs and with a sign saying “Munafik” (meaning hypocrite). Eyewitnesses said the terrorists took away those who could not recite the Islamic prayers. They beheaded hostages, killed military men and police, burned government facilities, destroyed hospitals and schools, and in general acted like lunatics out to destroy the city.

DefenseOne offers up this map of the fighting.

The latest reports say that Philippines armed forces have cleared 90% of Marawi City. Maute also claims it holds 200 hostages, though it could be exaggerating quite a bit.

The Trump Administration has officially voiced support for the Duterte Administration’s fight against Maute.

Here’s a WSJ video report that says the Islamic State assault on Marawi City may have been triggered by attempts to arrest Abu Sayyaf head Isnilon Hapilon (wanted by the FBI for beheading American Guillermo Sobero), and mentions the possible presence of foreign fighters:

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5 Responses to “Philippines Invasion Update”

  1. […] Group [Philippines]: Attempts to arrest Abu Sayyaf head Isnilon Hapilon are what evidently set off the fighting in Marawi City. al-Ansar Battalion [Algeria]: Defectors from al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), supposedly […]

  2. […] Abu Sayyaf Group [Philippines]: Attempts to arrest Abu Sayyaf head Isnilon Hapilon are what evidently set off the fighting in Marawi City. […]

  3. […] Abu Sayyaf Group [Philippines]: Attempts to arrest Abu Sayyaf head Isnilon Hapilon are what evidently set off the fighting in Marawi City. […]

  4. […] Abu Sayyaf Group Tradebuddy.onlinePhilippines]: Attempts to arrest Abu Sayyaf head Isnilon Hapilon are what evidently set off the fighting in Marawi City. […]

  5. […] Abu Sayyaf Group [Philippines]: Attempts to arrest Abu Sayyaf head Isnilon Hapilon are what evidently set off the fighting in Marawi City. […]

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