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Duterte awaiting recommendation from AFP, PNP on Martial Law extension – Palace

by Marje Pelayo   |   Posted on Friday, October 19th, 2018

 

AFP Chief of Staff General Carlito Galvez, Jr. and PNP Director General Oscar Albayalde

MANILA, Philippines – Presidential Spokesperson and Chief Legal Adviser Salvador Panelo clarified that President Rodrigo Duterte is still awaiting the recommendation from the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) on whether or not to extend the imposition of Martial Law in Mindanao.

It can be recalled that Congress allowed the extension of Martial Law in the region until December 31, 2018 upon request of the Duterte administration in order to eradicate Islamic State-inspired terror groups that sparked the Marawi siege.

Panelo said the President still gives utmost consideration to the information that the military provides as the soldiers are the ones monitoring the actual security situation on ground.

However, Panelo believes that another extension of Martial Law remains highly necessary to ensure the safety of the majority of citizens in all parts of the country.

“As I said, if it is helping the population – the population is not even opposing it, so to my mind, there is a need to extend it,” Panelo said. “But according to the President that will depend on the advice, the recommendation of the military because they are the ones on the ground.”

Meanwhile, Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said the Department of National Defense (DND) is continuously assessing the situation in Mindanao through consultations with members of the community, local government units, the business sector and civil society groups.

“We are currently assessing the situation consulting with the population, LGUs, military, police, business and civil society. We will make the recommendation in the next two months before the year ends,” Lorenzana said in a statement. –  Marje Pelayo (with reports from Rosalie Coz)

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PNP returns to normal operations as election period ends

by Maris Federez   |   Posted on Thursday, June 13th, 2019

The Philippine National Police has lowered its alert status as the election period comes to an end.

PNP spokesperson PCol. Bernard Banac said only a few areas that have reports of the presence of threat groups such as the Abu Sayyaf, Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters, and communist groups, are still on full alert.

These include Police Regional Office 9, 10, 11, 12, 13 and the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.

Banac, however, stressed that these areas are not under security threat.

“Wala namang security threat sa naturang mga lugar, nakafull alert pa din ang mga lugar na yun dahil martial law,” Banac said.

Banac added the past election period has been generally peaceful and validated election-related incidents had been low as compared with the 2016 Presidential Elections. (with reports from Lea Ylagan) /mbmf

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PNP records 6,000 violators as election gun ban ends tomorrow

by Maris Federez   |   Posted on Tuesday, June 11th, 2019

Seized firearms from violators

The Commission on Elections (Comelec) gun ban will come to a close as the election period ends tomorrow, (June 12).

This gives way for gun owners to carry firearms outside of their homes as long as they have the permit to do so.

The Philippine National Police (PNP) has recorded more than six thousand violators of the gun ban since it was launched on January 13.

More than five thousand guns and close to fifty thousand deadly weapons were confiscated by the authorities.

PNP spokesperson PCol Bernard Banac said, “lahat ng mga ito ay nakalaboso at sinampahan ng kaukulang kaso. Doon naman sa mga pulis na lumabag ay meron po silang kinakaharap ngayon na kasong administratibo dahil sa paglabag sa ating mg alituntunin at patakaran [all of them were detained and were filed cases against. The police officers who violated (the gun ban), are now facing administrative cases for violating our rules and regulations].” (with details from Lea Ylagan) /mbmf

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6 Abu Sayyaf members nabbed in separate NBI operations

by Maris Federez   |   Posted on Tuesday, June 11th, 2019

The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) presented to the media on Tuesday (June 11) six alleged members of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) who were arrested in separate operations last month.

The NBI said that the six were arrested in Taguig City, Balanga City in Bataan, and Zamboanga City on May 16 and 20.

NBI spokesperson Ferdinand Lavin said, “the six arrested were involved in various terrorist activities, ranging from ambush, kidnap for ransom, bombing in Southern Philippines, and recruitment of other members.”

He added that the arrest stemmed from the intelligence reports that they gathered and have led them to the whereabouts of Azmier Maalum in Taguig City.

The joint operations of the NBI, the Philippine Navy (PN) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) had led to the arrest of Maalum, along with Amar Assan, Musa Tahil Sampang, Jamil Ibrahim, Yong Aming, and Majuk Tahil Amil.

Maalum has several warrants of arrest for eight counts of kidnapping and serious illegal detention of Golden Harvest plantation workers in Basilan in 2001, while Sampang was involved in several bombing incidents also in Basilan.

The NBI said the six had been recruiting members in Metro Manila. (with reports from April Cenedoza) /mbmf

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