Lanao Sur mayors declare Maute group 'enemies' of Maranaos

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Aug 12 2017 06:16 PM

MANILA- Mayors of the province of Lanao del Sur on Saturday signed a manifesto declaring war against ISIS-inspired Maute extremists and its sympathizers.

All 41 mayors of the province inked the manifesto, which also declared the Maute group as "enemies of the Maranao people."

"We will engage the Maute on all fronts. Mobilizing all sectors, stakeholders, to combine our efforts to counter the spread of false teachings, radicalization of our youth and threat of terrorism," Zia Alonto Adiong, Marawi Crisis Management Committee spokesperson, said in a statement.

He added that local authorities also plan to mobilize religious and traditional leaders to combat the threat of terrorism.

Clashes in Marawi City have dragged on for nearly 3 months and have resulted in the death of 552 Maute fighters and 128 soldiers.

The long-drawn crisis has also forced more than 200,000 residents out of the city and thousands more from nearby areas.

The military previously said fighting has been confined to an area less than a square kilometer and that between 50 to 70 Maute terrorists remain in the conflict zone.