The army suspects that Islamic State-affiliated terrorists might have begun beheading Christians held as human shields in war-torn Marawi City.
However, military sources consider that kidnapped Catholic priest Father Teresito Suganob — who was filmed by militants final month pleading for the lives of some 240 hostages — remains to be alive.
Speaking to radio DZMM right now (Monday, June 26), Armed Forces spokesman Brigadier General Restituto Padilla mentioned: “We have obtained quite a few reports on these as a result of they’ve been executing all of the Christians that they seize.
“There is strong proof that they did this not only during the start of the fighting but until now.”
He additionally mentioned that movies of executions had been shared on-line and that rescued civilians had reported seeing victims executed.
It is believed that about 500 non-combatants are nonetheless trapped or held hostage in Maute group managed areas.
Yesterday, 5 folks had been rescued from the battle zone throughout an eight-hour ceasefire to coincide with Eid al-Fitr, the tip of Ramadan.
Military spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Jo-Ar Herrera mentioned Father Teresito “Chito” Suganob was seen alive yesterday in part of the town nonetheless within the arms of the extremists.
“We don’t have details of his health. We were just told that he was sighted alive.”
He additionally mentioned there have been about 100 civilian hostages nonetheless within the arms of the gunmen, getting used as “human shields”, ammunition carriers and stretcher-bearers.
It has additionally been introduced that the our bodies of two militants look like from the Middle East, one other signal that international jihadis have joined the battle.
“These foreign terrorists involved in the hostilities are bomb experts. They are the ones facilitating the rigging of the buildings and houses with bombs,” Mr Herrera mentioned.
Eight international fighters, from Chechnya, Indonesia and Malaysia had been killed within the early days of the battle.
The battle for Marawi, which broke out on May 23 and prompted President Duterte to put all of Mindanao underneath martial regulation, has left 300 extremists, 69 state troops and 27 civilians lifeless.