MANILA- The Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) denied on Tuesday that they regret the killing of terrorist leaders Isnilon Hapilon and Omar Maute.
Outgoing CBCP President Archbishop Socrates Villegas said no such statement was made and decried how they were again the "hapless victim of fake news."
Villegas was reacting to a social media post that falsely stated that the CBCP condemned the brutal killing of the 2 terrorists.
"Going viral on social media is a 'report' that the CBCP regrets the killing of Messrs. Hapilon and Maute. The CBCP never made such a statement," Villegas said.
Villegas emphasized that the CBCP lauds the efforts of government troops to liberate war-torn Marawi City.
"On the contrary, we laud the gallantry of our soldiers and their heroic efforts to free Marawi City. We will gladly join the government in rebuilding the city in the measure we are able," he said.
Hapilon and Maute were killed in a military assault early Monday.
On Wednesday, President Rodrigo Duterte announced the liberation of Marawi City even as fighting continued.