Abdullah Maute killed in airstrike. No confirmation: Only intercepted Telegram. Omar Maute is still alive: Army.

Abdullah Maute succumbs in airstrike.

PICS: Inquirer.net and ABS-CBN

PICS: Inquirer.net and ABS-CBN

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The continuing siege in the southern city of Marawi is continuing at a very cautious pace. It is now a very tactical phase of the warfare where both sides are maneuvering to outwit the other.
The emphasis of the government is on collecting intelligence and liquidating the remaining terrorists without losing troops. Meanwhile, intelligence sources reported on Monday that a prominent leader of the Islamic State perished in the ongoing fighting.
Two brothers Abdullah Maute and Omar Maute led the Islamic State-inspired terrorists. While intercepting communications between the holed up terrorists, the Army learnt that Abdullah Maute expired in the war zone.
The authorities are confident that their sources are irrefutable but want to wait for further authentication. Lt. Gen. Carlito Galvez, chief of the Western Mindanao Command (Wescom), revealed that the information came through intercepted communications of the terrorists.
A locally placed terrorist had transmitted the message for the Islamic State and sent via an app called Telegram.
Speaking to reporters at a press conference, he clarified that short of seeing the dead body, we cannot confirm the news, Galvez stated. However, his brother Omar Abdullah is still alive according to their sources.
Furthermore, so many rumors keep floating around in the war zone. In fact, they had received a rumor recently about Omar’s death. But, it turned out to be fake news, Galvez said.
The information spread since he sustained injuries; he continues to hide in Marawi City. The spokesperson for the Joint Task Force Marawi and Wescom, Capt. Jo-Ann Petinglay, explained the circumstances.
The telegrammed message required translation by the troops since it was in Arabic. Abdullah was killed during an airstrike but further details are awaited.
The President of the Philippines had earlier stated that the operation might continue till December. The troops killed over 600 terrorists since they took over the city on May 23.
The intention was to form a solid base for the Islamic State-inspired groups who did not negotiate with the government.Nearly 130 soldiers and about 50 civilians also perished in the battle to retake Marawi City.
Thus, the designs of Ismilon Hapilon to install Islamic State in the Philippines met with failure. Local terrorist groups also played a part in resisting the foreign invaders.
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Umrao Singh
Written for: Lars-Magnus Carlsson.
Tuesday, September 05, 2017