Dozens flee IS aligned gunmen in war-torn Philippine city

According to CNN Philippines, on Wednesday two jets were conducting strikes against members of the Maute group, which has pledged allegiance to ISIS, when one struck members of the 55th Infantry Battalion.

"They were able to get an armored vehicle of the police".

The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) on Thursday expressed concern on the safety of around 50,000 children affected in the clash between the government forces and militants in Marawi city.

The government is concerned that the group's brazen attack and its resilience could strike a chord with the Islamic State leadership in the Middle East and win its endorsement as its Southeast Asian affiliate.

On May 30, the Philippine government said it was already close to retaking Marawi City from the Maute group. If you fight us, you will die.

"Until such time that every member of this armed group, this rebellious group that still wants to make a stand inside Marawi exists, we can not totally say we have cleared Marawi". Days before the meeting with Putin, Duterte said he would restore better relations with China, as they were more important partner than the US. "There must be a mistake somewhere, either someone directing from the ground, or the pilot". Mindanao has a significant Muslim population, though the Philippines is a predominantly Catholic country.

Furthermore, it's been said that the militants are also comprised of Malaysians and Indonesians as well, thereby raising the prospect that a regional jihad of sorts has been launched against the Philippines just like how something similar was done against Syria throughout the course of its own War on Terror.

Based on reports, they have supporters who come from Maguindanao. The key will be how well it manages relations with the region's jihadi old guard, CTC said.

He said the corridor will be implemented by the government and the main separatist group, the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, which has signed a peace agreement in exchange for Muslim autonomy in Mindanao, the southern third of the Philippines where a Muslim rebellion has raged for decades.

In a video that surfaced last June, a Syria-based leader of the group urged followers in the region to join Hapilon if they could not travel to the Middle East. Hapilon was named IS leader in Southeast Asia a year ago.

The Philippines Justice Department has issued warrants for more than 100 members of the Maute group and the Abu Sayyaf terrorist organization, both of which are believed to be involved in the fighting in Marawi.

As many as 2,000 people also remained trapped in desperate conditions in these areas, the government said, likely without food and water and with some injured or ailing as security forces mount a relentless assault. It also wants to ban betting, karaoke and so-called "relationship dating".

He added the Marawi siege is a "desperate Washington try to topple the very popular (80% popularity in polls) Duterte, who successfully won the presidency last June over a US-backed Mar Roxas, a US-educated former Wall Street banker". "They wanted him to be a fighter", she told Reuters after joining the morning exodus.

In a news conference in Marawi on Friday, military officials said they expected the operation to take additional days to complete, blaming the presence of snipers.

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