Border security up

IN THE wake of the killing of the two top leaders of the Isis-inspired terrorist groups behind the siege in Marawi City, Eastern Mindanao Command (Eastmincom) has directed all its subordinate units to be alert and strengthen all border security measures to thwart potential violent spillovers in their area.

Eastmincom Public Information Officer Major Ezra Balagtey said on Tuesday, October 17, that all the military units under their command were ordered to raise their alert level as they do not discount the possibility of retaliatory attacks by sympathetic groups following the killing of Abu Sayyaf leader Isnilon Hapilon and Maute Group leader Omarkhayam Maute in war-ravaged Marawi City on Monday, October 16.

“The directive, which includes the intensification of security operations in the different areas and the territorial waters, was given during the gathering of Commanders and Staff of subordinate units for the conduct of the 3rd Quarter 2017 Campaign Progress Review and Assessment at Headquarters Eastern Mindanao Command,” Balagtey said.

He added that Lieutenant General Rey Leonardo Guerrero, the Commander of Eastmincom has “emphasized the need to strengthen border security as a pro-active measure to prevent the terrorists from using it as their mobility corridor” thus, the formation of Inter-Agency Border Security Coordinating Council (IABSCC) in Davao Region is apt to help in security monitoring.

Last September 15, the IABSCC composed of various concerned agencies in maritime security signed a memorandum of understanding to formalize the creation of the body and as a sign of commitment to closely work together in solidifying border security in the entire region as to leave no chance for lawless armed group to enter the region.

Guerrero also acknowledged the importance of cooperation and support of various stakeholders in addressing terrorism.

He likewise urged the public to be alert and vigilant in their surroundings and report any suspicious-looking personalities or activities in the respective areas for a quick action on their side to prevent any eventualities.

“We recognize the importance of the support coming from the populace. We therefore ask everyone to be vigilant and to report to the authorities any suspicious activities in their respective communities,” Guerrero said.


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