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Defense chief submits martial law recommendation to Duterte

17 Juillet 2017

On May 23, Duterte placed the besieged region under martial rule after Islamic State-inspired Maute terror groups laid siege to Marawi City in Lanao del Sur province in an attempt to establish Caliphate for Jihadist fighters in Southeast Asia.

President Rodrigo Duterte, in an interview on the sidelines of his visit to the 403rd Infantry Brigade Headquarters at Camp Bahian in Barangay Impalambong, Malaybalay City, Bukidnon on July 6, 2017.

He said what the police and the military have submitted would just serve as a guide for the President.

The submission of the recommendation came out to be earlier than what the Armed Forces of the Philippines have been pronouncing the past week.

"The Department of National Defense has submitted to the Office of the President its recommendation on July 13 whether or not to extend Martial Law in Marawi and the whole of Mindanao".

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The imposition of martial law in Mindanao is set to be lifted on July 22 when it reaches the 60 day allowable period by the 1987 Constitution.

Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana did not elaborate any details on the contents of the recommendations as he does not want to pre-empt the decision of the President.

"We will have to wait for the president's final decision on the matter", Lorenzana was quoted by ABS-CBN news as saying.

Lorenzana, who was also designated as chairperson of Task Force Bangon Marawi to rebuild and rehabilitate Marawi, acknowledged that the work ahead after the fighting is even more daunting considering the extent of damage wrought into the city.

"That is why we have decided in the past that only our best men and women should be allowed to operate in critical areas such as Marawi City and elsewhere in Mindanao, and that our Muslim brothers and sisters should not be singled out in our operations since terrorism goes beyond any religion or creed", he added.