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Military prepares for final assault

MARAWI (PNA) – The remaining Maute Group terrorists are now just pocketed in an area measuring less than one-square kilometer in Marawi City, Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) chief-of-staff Gen. Eduardo Año said late Monday.

Also, he reported that military units, engaged in the ongoing clearing operations, have captured 50 more buildings, including a very tall one, during operations Sunday.

“So we’ll have one final push to really break their line and finally clear the whole area of Marawi, (Maute Group resistance) is confined to less than one-square kilometer. But we cannot neglect or bypass (buildings) as its fatal and dangerous to our soldiers and the trapped civilians,” the AFP chief stressed.

As of 7 p.m. Sunday, the number of troops wounded in the ongoing conflict in Marawi City is now at 852.

This was offset by the number of lawless elements killed which is now placed at 411, the military added.

Troopers killed in action was placed at 97 along with 45 civilians.

The number of recovered firearms is placed at 511 while civilians rescued from the clutches of the terrorists is pegged at 1,723. A soldier is also reported missing-in-action.

Fighting broke out in Marawi City after government troops tried to arrest Abu Sayyaf leader Isnilon Hapilon and ISIS “emir” in Southeast Asia last May 23.

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