BEIRUT, LEBANON (6:30 A.M.) – The Philippine armed forces hung flags in war-torn Marawi City, Sunday, ahead of the celebration of Independence Day on June 12.
As the battle against Maute militants enters its third week, the display of flags is attempting to boost the spirits of the troops. Government forces are working to liberate the besieged city.
The armed forces announced that they have been gaining ground in several areas of the city, and that militants only have a hold on around 10 percent of the city.
They estimate that as many as 600 civilians are still trapped in the urban heart of the town, while up to 200 Maute fighters could still be on the loose.
Military planes dropped bombs while troops opened fire on the militants in a bid to clear the city of fighters.
So far over 100 militants have died in battle, along with dozens of government troops. The number of civilians that have died has not yet been confirmed.