Traders warn against extended, expanded martial law


Posted at Jul 06 2017 04:01 PM | Updated as of Jul 06 2017 04:30 PM

MANILA - Some businessmen have raised concern over a possible extension or expansion of martial law in Mindanao, as fighting between government forces and Islamic State-inspired militants in a southern city raged for the 45th day on Thursday.

But in an interview with ANC, Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez said martial law was "favorable" to ending the conflict in Marawi City.

"We don’t want any semblance of creeping martial law. That’s a big no-no... We don’t want it to spread to the Visayas and eventually, to Manila and Luzon," RS Lim and Co President Ali Yu told ANC.

Expanded martial law would imply that there would be "more disruptions to economic activity," said Moody's Investor Service analyst Christian de Guzman.

The martial law declaration is effective for 60 days unless extended. Presidential Spokesman Ernesto Abella said this would depend on recommendations from the police and the military.