Troops overran Maute stronghold in Marawi

Jul. 04, 2017

TAKE OVER. More strongholds of ISIS-linked Maute group were overran by government ground forces on Monday, July 3. Joint Task Force Marawi commander Brig. Gen. Rolando Joselito Bautista said it will just be a matter of time and soldiers will fully liberate Marawi from terrorists and criminal gangs. (Alex D. Lopez/

DAVAO CITY, Philippines – The Army said government troopers successfully took control one of the strongholds of the Maute Group within the main battle area (MBA) in Marawi on Monday.

The battle in Marawi now runs more than 40 days after members of Maute attacked the area last May 23.

“Troops have taken over control of Dansalan College, one of the strongholds of the terrorists and criminal gangs who attacked Marawi a month ago,” the Joint Task Force Marawi said in a statement on Tuesday.

The task force added that the school hosted to some high rise structures that served as machine gun nests and snipers’ vantage position of Maute members.

JTF said ground troopers have gradually taken over other strongholds of the Maute group.

Soldiers also recovered a Caliber .50 machinegun and 14 high-powered firearms from the overtaken strongholds of the terrorists.

A cadaver of a foreign-looking individual was also recovered by troopers in Dansalan School, believed to be one of the reported foreign fighters from Singapore, the JTF said.

Since the siege broke out, a total of 11 foreign terrorists were already killed in Marawi.

“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,” said Brig. Gen. Rolando Joselito Bautista, commander of JTF in the same statement.

Bautista added that soldiers involved in ground operations are fully aware of what is at stake and that they will work together to neutralize the Maute members and the other criminal gangs in the area.

The task force also reported of 1,717 trapped civilians already rescued by the troopers and rescue volunteers from Marawi.

Read related story: Number of gov’t troopers killed in Marawi rises to 84

Lt. Gen. Carlito Galvez, Jr., commander of Western Mindanao reminded the ground forces involved in clearing operations to 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,” Galvez said in the same statement.

JTF believed that 300 to 500 civilians are still trapped inside the war-torn areas of Marawi. (

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