Duterte declares liberation of Marawi City from militants

Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte declared Marawi City “liberated from the terrorist influence that marks the beginning of rehabilitation” after a five-month counter-terrorism operation, according to media reports citing the leader’s speech. This comes following the elimination of the two top ISIS-linked terrorist leaders. Isnilon Hapilon, the Abu Sayyaf Group leader, and Omar Maute, from the group bearing his name, were killed in an operation on Monday. However, military operations continue as 30 Islamist rebels holding around 20 hostages are still in the city, Reuters reports, citing military spokesman Restituto Padilla’s interview to ANC news.