ILIGAN CITY - Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Jesus Dureza joined Marawi evacuees here Friday for the celebration of Eid'l Adha or the Islamic feast of sacrifice.
Dureza and the undersecretaries of Task Force Bangon Marawi shared a boodle meal with displaced persons in an evacuation camp.
Some young evacuees also made art depicting the feast of sacrifice with slogans themed around the need for peace.
Dureza urged the evacuees to be more understanding as the government pushed towards liberating the besieged city of Marawi and bring back a sense of normalcy to its residents.
"Dapat intindihin po natin na 'di kagustuhan ng gobyerno at ibang mga tao na magpatuloy pa na nandito kayo. Mas happy kami 'pag umuwi na kayo kaya kasama tayo sa sakripisyo na 'yan,” Dureza said.
An evacuee shared that sacrifice has taken a new meaning for them, and asked the government to speedily resolve the ongoing conflict, which is into its fourth month.
“Kami po ay humihingi ng tulong sa gobyerno para kami po ay mailigtas sa karahasan na hindi namin alam kung ano ang dahilan. Kaya ngayon, nagtiis kami at naiwan ang lahat ng gusto namin sa buhay tulad ng mga kagamitan namin,” the evacuee said.
Clashes between state forces and Islamic State-inspired extremists in Marawi City have left nearly 800 people dead, mostly terror suspects.
The conflict, which erupted on May 23, has forced over 400,000 people out of the city and nearby areas, and has left much of the once bustling urban center in ruins.
The military said earlier this week that firefights have been confined within a 500-sqm area in the city.