Gov’t to go after Maute arms suppliers after the Marawi crisis » Manila Bulletin News

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By Genalyn Kabiling

Once the Marawi conflict is over, President Duterte is determined to find out the source of the huge cache of weapons used by the Islamic militants in the besieged city.

Firearms recovered from terrorists in Marawi City are inspected by (from left): Presidential Adviser for the Peace Process Jesus Dureza, National Security Adviser Hermogenes Esperon, and Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana. (Malacañang photo | Manila Bulletin File Photo)

The President has called for a probe into the Maute group’s weapon stockpile after expressing concern the arsenal included ammunition from Department of National Defense (DND) used to kill and injure government troops in the battlefield in Marawi.

“It would be good that after this war, if it will end someday to start looking into saan itong mga baril pati ‘yung mga bala kasi may mga karton doon marka pa ‘yung DND personnel, from DND ordnance,” the President said before an assembly of policemen at Camp Quintin Merecido in Davao City last Thursday night.

“Before I left for Russia, I was already told that there was already amassing per intelligence report but hindi ko akalain na ganon karami ang bala. Saan nila nakuha?” he said.

The President said the armed group has apparently used illegal drug money to buy more weapons and stockpile them in Marawi for their planned attack. He claimed that militants were behind the manufacturing and sale of illegal drugs in some parts of Mindanao.

“When I had my first command conference sa mga pulis, sa sundalo, as President, we’re talking about drugs and I was really hitting the drug issue because it was fueling. Ang gasolina ng mga terorista was drugs,” he said.

“They were producing drugs beyond the normal capacity of all of the addicts in the Philippines can consume. So they were really selling and buying guns and everything,” he said.

The President, meantime, ordered a formation of a “battalion of snipers” to battle the Islamic militants in the south. He said the troops could use some of the new weapons donated by China to the Armed Forces.

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