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Last stand for 30 remaining Maute

A Philippine military official says government forces are fighting the last batch of about 30 pro-Islamic State group militants who are surrounded in just one building with all their hostages gone as the nearly five-month siege nears its end in southern Marawi City.

The head of the Islamic State group in Southeast Asia, who figures on the United States ”most wanted terrorists” list, has been killed in the battle to reclaim a militant-held Mindanao city, the country’s Defense minister said Monday.

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A better Marawi

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President Rodrigo Roa Duterte and officials of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) have indicated that the end to the Marawi crisis might be near.

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Military forces are said to be inching closer towards the remaining strongholds of the Maute Group in Marawi City in a final push to drive away the ISIS-inspired gunmen in the once-bustling Islamic City in Mindanao.

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Australia will send troops to assist Philippine forces in the ongoing battle against Islamic State-inspired Maute Group in Marawi City, Australia’s Defense Minister Marise Payne said.

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No less than AFP Western Min-danao Command chief Lt. Gen. Carlito Galvez made the claim, citing multiple sources, according to Task Force Marawi spokesperson Capt. Jo-Ann Petinglay.

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