Saturday , June 23, 2018

Dela Rosa: Martial law extension 'necessary'

PHILIPPINE National Police (PNP) Chief Ronald Dela Rosa said Wednesday that martial law should be extended for another 60 days to ensure the safety of the entire Mindanao.

"Hindi naman specific threat but through our assessment, 'yun nga sinabi nga ng mga Maute, doon sa plano na nakuha sa video, na kapag hindi nila makuha itong, aside from Marawi, ay pwede nilang tirahin 'yung Iligan City at ibang cities," Dela Rosa said.

Dela Rosa was referring to the video of the Islamic State-inspired Maute group during the planning of the attack they staged in Marawi.

He said martial law may be used to ensure the peace and order and the safety of the people in Mindanao.

However, he assured that even without the martial law, police and military security measures will be in place.

"Well siguro kung maoobserhaan niyo lahat ng security forces, including the local governments, ay talagang meron silang mga preparations sa kani-kanilang lugar pagdating sa security, pati mga mamamayan at yung community mismo," Dela Rosa said.

Earlier, Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana admitted that they underestimated the strength of the Maute group, which has laid siege to Marawi City since May 23.

Lorenzana said their initial estimate was that around 250 bandits entered the said city, but it turned out there were over 700 rebels fighting against government troops.

He said he does not want to give any deadline but assured that the crisis will end “soon.” (SunStar Philippines)