DAVAO CITY, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte bared a boiling tension in a Maguindanao town for opting to extend Martial Law than lifting it.
He said information sent to him cited a possible “spillover” of serious terror activity in Buldon town in Maguindanao at the time that his declaration of Martial Law was to expire on its two months in July.
“I was thinking that we could, you know, lift it earlier. But the way it looks, parang may spill over na sa ARMM eh. Sa Buldon,” he said.
But the President did not provide further details. He said if lifting Martial Law will benefit the country, he will lift it earlier.
“Let us see. If it is to the interest of the country that I will lift it, I will lift it. But if not, then we’ll just have to continue with the martial law,” he said here on Friday. Duterte graced the 11th Founding Anniversary of the Eastern Mindanao Command held at the Naval Station Felix Apolinario in Panacan.
The military has not yet issued a statement on the matter.
On August 2, the Jamaah Mohajirin Wal Ansar or JMA, a faction of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters, which allegedly pledged allegiance to the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (Isis) reportedly tried to raise their flag in Datu Salibo town in Maguindanao.
Datu Salibo is 100 kilometers away from Marawi City where the government continues to fight against I
sis-inspired Maute group.
Datu Salibo is a bailwick of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, where the BIFF broke away.
The MILF, who has been launching operations against the JMA, believes the faction are coddling foreign terrorists who might have a hand in the Marawi crisis.(davaotoday.com)