By Camcer Ordonez Imam
MARAWI CITY — Authorities have recently rescued more than 100 internally displaced persons (IDPs) in a village here, bringing to 69,853 individuals or 14,699 families rescued since fighting between the military and a local terror group started.
Maj. Abdullah Mocsona, Philippine Army’s Civil-Military Operations officer, 103rd Brigade, 1st Infantry Division, based in Kampo Ranao, here, said the civilians were picked up by joint rescue teams from the AFP-PNP-ICRC in Barangay Datu Saber Monday morning, and brought to an evacuation center in Iligan City after having been processed for proper identification.
The IDPs were rescued through the assistance of Datu Saber barangay officials led by their chairwoman.
Several residents are still trapped in the fighting between the military and the Maute terror group.
From the provincial capitol of Lanao del Sur in Barangay Buadi Sakayo, bomb shelling and volley of fires were overheard on Monday.
As this developed, civilian and military authorities have issued protocols for civilians to be rescued.
Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) Assemblyman Zia Alonto Adiong, spokesperson of the provincial crisis management committee, said civilians are advised to put white armbands and, if with vehicles, to display white flags, as well.
Adiong said this will provide rescue teams with proper visuals to easily reach out to them.
As of Monday, all the barangays situated before the bridges traversing the Agus River have been cleared of animosity, including Mindanao State University Main campus, Matampay Capitol, Amay Pakpak Medical Center, Basak Malutlut, Bario Green, Bangon and Saduc villages.
Curfew has been implemented from 8 pm to 5 am.
“We have been given a go signal from the military sector to distribute relief goods to IDPs (internally displaced persons) in the municipalities surrounding Lake Lanao,” Adiong said.
As of Monday, a total of 6,873 families or some 34,365 persons were served by humanitarian outreach groups.
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