Philippine troops battling ISIS recover P76 million
Recovered money worth P53.2 million in Marawi City. (Mindanao Examiner Photo - Rhoderick Beñez)
MARAWI CITY – Philippine troops fighting local ISIS in war-ravaged Marawi City have recovered over P76 million in cash and cheques from a house the militant group use in attacking security forces, officials said on Tuesday.
Officials also presented the P52.2 million cash and about P23.7 million worth of cheques in a news conference here. Marines were clearing the house when they discovered the money, including an automatic rifle.
“Marine forces doing house to house clearing against the terrorists recovered the amount and under constant fire, a team extricated the area to surrender the millions to the headquarters of Task Force Marawi.”
“The recovered money will be for safekeeping of proper authorities until appropriate investigation is conducted and proper identification of owner is established. This act is a manifestation for keeping the highest standard of discipline, valor and commitment in safeguarding Marawi and defending the community from terror elements,” said Army Captain Jo-ann Petinglay, a spokeswoman for the Western Mindanao Command.
It was unknown whether the money were looted by militants from a bank in Marawi or ISIS funds, but an investigation was immediately launched to determine the origin of the huge amount of cash.
Brigadier General Rolando Joselito Bautista, the task force commander, praised the soldiers for their honesty and bravery. “We are proud of our soldiers in the field. Their commendable actions in caring for our people bespeak of the best practices in the Armed Forces of the Philippines,” he said.
Jihadists occupied Marawi on May 23 and dozens of people had been killed in the fighting that displaced over 200,000 civilians now in evacuation centers here and other parts of Lanao del Sur. (Rhoderick Beñez)
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