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Mindanao generally peaceful – AFP

By: Genalyn D. Kabiling

The Armed Forces said yesterday that Mindanao remains generally peaceful amid the extended martial law implementation and other security measures in place.

Armed Forces spokesman Brig. Gen. Restituto Padilla Jr. gave the assurance after the United Kingdom, Australia, and Canadian governments issued travel warnings against Mindanao due to threats of terror attacks and kidnapping.

“This is nothing new. There have been pronouncements before and it’s because of the offshoot of the violent incidents happening in Marawi,” Padilla said about the travel advisories by the Western nations.

“But by and large, Mindanao remains peaceful because of the enforcement of martial law and our strong security measures that are in place,” he said.

Padilla highlighted that government troops have successfully curbed the movement of lawless elements with the establishment of checkpoints. “There were so many checkpoints that have been established. We have controlled the movement of suspicious people from getting to different places because they may not be up to anything good,” he said.

Meanwhile, Padilla said the military operations in Marawi City continue to progress positively.

He said the area of operation is now confined to two-and-a-half barangays or “about less than one square kilometer of the most problematic areas.” Around 60 Maute fighters are still holed up in Marawi, Padilla added.