MANILA (UPDATE) - The Philippines on Wednesday welcomed the U.S. Treasury Department's move to include the Maute group on its sanctions list for global terrorism.
"The Philippine welcomes the US designation of ISIS Philippines and Maute group as foreign terrorist organizations and specially designating global terrorists," Foreign Affairs Undersecretary Ernesto Abella said.
"Cooperation with key allies is critical in averting terrorist operations," he said.
Malacañang meanwhile said Washington's move affirms Manila's belief that the Maute group is composed of local terrorists aided by foreign extremists.
"This likewise recognizes the decisive action we have taken in liberating Marawi from these terrorists, which resulted in the success of the government in thwarting the establishment of an Islamic caliphate in the area and the containing of the rebellion from spreading to other parts of the Philippines," Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said in a statement Wednesday.
The ISIS-inspired Maute group was behind the 5-month siege of Marawi City that ended last October 23, 2017.
The fierce battles between government forces and Maute terrorists left a thousand people dead and displaced over 350,000 residents from the city and nearby towns.