GOVERNMENT forces recovered on Sunday, at least 30 high-powered firearms believed to be owned by the Maute fighters, in Lake Lanao in Marawi City, a military official said Monday.
Joint Task Forces Ranao deputy commander Colonel Romeo Brawner said, while conducting clearing operations in Lake Lanao particularly near the Bandaringin Mosque in Baranggay Marinaut, one of the members of the search teams noticed a floating weapon.
He said it prompted the team to get into the water and discovered, at the bottom of it, several high powered firearms.
“It is believed that the terrorists, during the last hours of the firefight, when they have smelled defeat and when they were about to make their final escape, threw their weapons into the lake,” Brawner said.
He said search and clearing operations in the said area will continue hoping that more items will be recovered.
Clearing operations in Marawi City has been on –going since two weeks ago after the termination of combat operations in the area following the killing of the two top leaders of the Islamic State (IS) inspired Maute terror group Isnilon Hapilon and Omar Maute.
Hapilon and Maute spearheaded the terror attack in Marawi City which lasted for five months and which resulted in the killing of over 900 rebels, at least a hundred of government forces and over 40 innocent civilians.
The war has also flattened the city due to the gun battle and bombs thrown by each side. (SunStar Philippines)