LOOK: PH flag raised at Maute terror group's main camp

Chiara Zambrano, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Mar 01 2016 07:41 PM

LANAO DEL SUR - As a sign of victory and the restoration of order, the Philippine flag was raised at the main camp of the Maute Terrorist Group in Barangay Poctan, Butig, Lanao del Sur.

The main camp looks like a normal community but is actually designed for battle. There are foxholes and trenches around. The houses were made of solid concrete with small windows.

Recovered inside the camp and at the first line of defense were two Rocket-Propelled Grenades (RPGs), four M16 rifles, and a .50-caliber sniper rifle. There were also various paraphernalia which may be used to make illegal drugs, and ingredients for improvised explosive devices (IEDs).

There were also identification cards, photos of young fighters, documents that teach radicalization, and Islamic State (ISIS) headbands and armbands scattered among the debris.

Also found inside the camp was the burnt house of the terrorist group's leader, Omar Maute, hit by rockets. The house of Abdullah Maute was there as well.

In Barangay Ragayan, where the first line of defense of the Maute group stood, there was an elementary school behind the group's watch tower. Troops who first went in said the ISIS flag was raised in the flagpole of that school.

Maj. Gen. Gerardo Barrientos, commander of the 1st Infantry Division, said the Maute group has been causing havoc in Lanao del Sur for some time now and is responsible for killings in as far as Marawi City.

The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) said it will do its best to pursue and eliminate this group completely before it has the chance to regroup and recruit more youth.

At least six soldiers were killed, one of them beheaded, and 11 others were injured in the clashes with the Maute terrorist group.

Around 50 to 60 from the terrorist group were also killed, the AFP said.

READ: Thousands flee deadly fighting in Lanao del Sur