FILE IMAGE: A screenshot of a video in the internet showing some allegedly Filipinos signifying alliance with the ISIS terrorist group.
MANILA, Philippines — The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) said the remaining terrorists are still recruiting and strengthening their forces.
Twenty-three armed groups are believed to have joined forces under the so-called “ISIS Philippines”.
However, the AFP is still verifying the said information.
The military is also looking into intelligence reports that a certain Abu Dar replaced Isnilon Hapilon as the emir of the Islamic State in Southeast Asia.
Abu Dar, a Maranao, was able to flee the clashes in Marawi City and is believed to have brought with him a huge sum of money.
“We are trying to confirm the veracity of that information. Yesterday, informal reports came in regarding the matter and I’m telling it to the intelligence community, operations and people on the ground we are trying to confirm that,” AFP spokesperson BGen. Bienvenido Datuin said.
The AFP noted that terrorists continue to recruit new members, organize, and re-train themselves.
The military and the police are also verifying a circulating text message, saying terrorists are planning to bomb six cities.
The said text message states a leaked copy of the Philippine National Police (PNP) Region X in Cagayan de Oro City.
“We are closely monitoring them to make sure that they will not conduct or execute any atrocities or terroristic actions within the metropolis or any urban areas,” said the AFP spokesperson.
“This is being validated, but this should not be a cause of panic or alarm among our citizens. If we are talking about Mindanao, so we could protect the people there. Here in our area, in Visayas and Luzon, the security forces, the military, the intelligence community and the PNP are on top of the situation. We are doing our part in seeing to it that our people will be protected,” said PNP spokesperson PCSupt. John Bulalacao. — Lea Ylagan | UNTV News & Rescue