MARAWI CITY – Five alleged ISIS militants were killed in a clash early Monday with soldiers following an attempt to reinforce other fighters in the besieged city of Marawi in southern Philippines, officials said.
Officials said the militants were in two boats when soldiers intercepted them and a firefight ensued killing the gunmen. Troops recovered the bodies of the slain fighters and one of the boats. The other boat allegedly sank.
Fighting still continues in Marawi as the battle is now on its 4th month with the military chief Eduard Ano saying this could be over soon. The military insisted that security forces had allegedly killed a total of 603 ISIS members since fighting began on May 23 when militants occupied Marawi in an effort to declare it a province of the Islamic State.
Despite the huge number of enemy casualties, the military did not provide evidence to back up its claims, except saying that all these kills were based on intelligence reports. It said 130 soldiers and 45 civilians also perished in the clashes. (Mindanao Examiner)
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