Martial law extension deterrent to ISIS recruitment: Marawi mayor

MANILA -- Marawi City Mayor Majul Usman Gandamra on Friday welcomed the Supreme Court's (SC) decision upholding martial law extension, saying it will prevent possible recruitment of new members of ISIS-inspired terrorist groups in Mindanao.

We believe it will help especially in addressing the possible recruitment of would-be members of ISIS-inspired groups, Gandamra said during the Task Force Bangon Marawi (TFBM) press briefing in MalacaAang.

Voting 10-5, the SC en banc affirmed the constitutionality of President Rodrigo R. Duterte's second extension of martial law in Mindanao up to the end of 2018.

Gandamra said the local government of Marawi is supporting the martial law extension.

He agreed with the report of Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) that there is no ongoing recruitment of new members of Maute groups in Marawi.

But in other areas, according to reports of the AFP, there are areas where possible recruitment is taking place but it is being addressed by our security forces, Gandamra said.

Gandamra said the martial law's re-extension will also help the impending reconstruction of Marawi City.

The southern Philippine city was severely damaged during the five-month battle between military forces and Maute terrorists last year.

During the TFBM media briefing, Philippine Information Agency Director General Harold Clavite said the new military camp to be built in Barangay Kapantaran will not only prevent re-entry of ISIS-inspired Maute terrorist groups in Marawi but protect the region from any security threats.

Duterte graced the groundbreaking ceremony of the new military camp last Jan. 30. (PNA)

Source: Philippine News Agency