By Ali Macabalang
MARAWI City —The continued fighting between government forces and local terrorists here has already displaced 84,460 residents in what authorities of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) feared to drag on with “immense sufferings even after the end of the siege.”
In its meeting in Cotabato City Monday, the ARMM crisis management committee (CMC) also reported that at least 3,717 individuals were still stranded in different suburbs here and 59 others have been “missing.”
Of the accounted internally displaced persons (IDPs), 67,870 individuals are now sheltered in 38 evacuation centers here while 16,590 others sought refuge more are staying in the houses of relatives in nearby towns and in Iligan City, according to ARMM Governor and CMC Chair Mujiv Hataman.
The statistics on IDPs, stranded residents and missing persons were based on reports received by the monitoring hotlines of the ARMM relief and emergency centers here and in Cotabato City, the CMC secretariat said.
Hataman will lead the Cotabato emergency response center while his Deputy Governor Haroun Al-Rashid Lucman, concurrent ARMM social welfare and development secretary, will supervise personally the counterpart here
He ordered the establishment of the CMC and the setting up of response centers with emergency hotlines following their confirmation of worsening human crisis in Marawi City.
The ARMM’s Bureau of Public Information said the fighting between state forces and local terror elements “already has inflicted immense sufferings to residents in the city that are bound to persist long after the end of the siege.”
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