😲😨 @Regrann from @nick_cusi - #Repost @freedom_faction
The #Philippines has become the first nation in #Asia to have one of its cities fall to the international terror group #Daesh (#ISIS). Clashes between militants and #Filipino security forces began #MondayNight in the southern city of #Marawi, as the #GovernmentRaided a home where the leader of the local branch of Daesh, Isnilon Hapilon, was believed to be hiding.
Hundreds of gunmen descended upon the city following the raid, including Daesh forces and members of militant groups that have pledged allegiance to Daesh, including Maute and Abu Sayyaf. Abu Sayyaf also shares links to al-Qaeda – an unusual arrangement, considering that #AlQaeda and Daesh are ostensibly at war with each other.
As Daesh takes control of numerous landmarks and most of the residential areas in the city, the #PhilippineArmy continues to control most of the city’s military bases and government buildings. Heavy fighting continues as the Philippine Army attempts to reclaim areas lost earlier in the week. Marawi, home to a population of around 200,000, has already seen #SeveralChristians taken #Hostage . In response to the chaos, #PhilippinePresident #RodrigoDuterte cut his visit to #Russia short and declared #MartialLaw in the entire region of #Mindanao, where Marawi is located.
The circumstances of Daesh’s advances in the Philippines are interesting, as its takeover came hours after an RT interview with #Duterte aired in which the #President offered sharp rebukes of the #UnitedStates , including the suggestion that the U.S., particularly the #CIA , is seeking to destabilize his administration. Though Duterte asserted that he enjoys a friendly relationship with #PresidentDonaldTrump, he added that Congress, the State Department and other arms of the U.S. political establishment are not in accord with Trump – making it difficult for him to count on the U.S. as an ally in his nation’s fight against #Terrorism .