MANILA – The Philippine National Police (PNP) may recommend the extension of martial law in select areas in Mindanao, its officer-in-charge Lt. Gen. Archie Gamboa said Wednesday.
"Generally yes, but there is still an ongoing assessment on the part of the PNP. Baka puwede maging (Maybe we can be) selective," Gamboa said when asked if the police force would recommend another extension of martial law in the restive south.
Gamboa said the PNP is for the "discontinuance" of martial law except in areas where terrorism remained "strong."
The police official, however, refused to identify these areas.
"I don't want to preempt kasi gusto ko may proper evaluation, proper supporting information and intelligence dito sa mga lugar," he said.
On Monday, Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said he was not inclined to recommend another extension of martial rule in Mindanao.
Presidential Spokesman Salvador Panelo said President Rodrigo Duterte would consider Lorenzana's recommendation.
Mindanao was first placed under martial law in 2017 following clashes in Marawi City between government forces and Islamic State-inspired militants.
After Marawi was liberated on Oct. 17, 2017, Duterte sought another extension for 2018, and another until the end of 2019. -- With a report from Raffy Santos, ABS-CBN News