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Philippines Has Not Yet Receive Formal Notice Of US Plan For Marawi Air Strikes, AFP Chief Says

The Armed Forces Chief of Staff Eduardo Año said that the Philippines has not received formal notice of US plans for Marawi air strikes.

On May 23, 2017, Marawi has been attacked by the Maute Terror Group after the government troops have raided the possible hideout of the Abu Sayyaf leader Isnilon Hapilon who ask from reinforcement from the ISIS inspired group.

The exchange of deafening gun shots between the military soldiers and the extremists has prompted President Rodrigo Duterte to declare martial throughout the entire Mindanao region to control the situation in the area.

Air Strikes

After more than two months of fighting the terrorist’s group, the conflict zone has been confined to only two and a half barangays, which becomes more advantageous for the government troops to put an end to Marawi crisis.

Recently, Eduardo Año, the chief of Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) said that they were waiting for the formal notice of the United States’ plan to conduct air strikes in the besieged city of Marawi.

“The existing Mutual Defense Treaty provides that only technical assistance and training may be allowed under the Mutual Defense Board-Security Engagement Board (MDB-SEB). Direct military actions may only be allowed during actual invasion of the Philippines by another state actor,” said by Año quoted by ABS-CBN.

Air Strikes

On Monday (August 08, 2017), NBC, a new network in the US reported that Pentagon was considering a plan to allow the US military for Marawi air strikes. The air strikes would be conducted by armed drones, according to some reports.

The United States was providing technical assistance to the Philippines such as the two brand new brand new surveillance aircraft amounting $33 million and weapons but complained that there are no American boots on the conflict zone.

The increasing numbers of pro-Islamic State groups in the country have raised the concern of the United States and the neighbor countries of the Philippines. Foreign ministers from different countries have discussed on how to counter terrorism during their annual meeting in Manila.

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