CAGAYAN DE ORO — President Rodrigo Duterte on Saturday, June 3, assured the public that the country is well and stable.
President Duterte made the pronouncement following his visit to 63 soldiers who are confined at the Camp Edilberto Evangelista Station Hospital after sustaining injuries in recent encounters with local terror group Maute in Marawi.
The President spoke with the wounded soldiers and provided them with financial assistance worth PHP100,000. He also awarded each soldier with medals and handed out firearms to the injured troops who fought in Marawi.
Speaking to the media after the hospital visit, the Chief Executive underscored that the government has to save lives and that the military must also be extra careful not to kill civilians.
Duterte said that while he can end the war in 24 hours, he is mindful that there should be minimal collateral damage.
“It is not easy to ponder kung ikaw sundalo ka and you know that you have killed children and civilians. Hindi ganon kadali ‘yan, mabigat sa konsensya ‘yan. And ako, I also realized that that is my bolden duty is to save lives. Not to destroy,” President Duterte said.
Duterte said the Marawi crisis was planned and that the Armed Forces will deal with the problem, including those who funded the terrorists.
“I will not hesitate the armed might of the Republic of the Philippines, the Armed Forces, to use every power available in their hand to quell the rebellion and terrorism,” Duterte said.
“In the days ahead we will arrest all of them. Number one ‘yung nag produce ng shabu, nagbigay ng pera sa terorista, they will all be arrested, whether politicians or not,” he said.
Meanwhile, President Duterte dispelled speculations that the Resorts World Manila incident was a terror attack.
“That is not the work of the ISIS. The work of the ISIS is more cruel and brutal. They would just simply kill people for nothing. Not even for a reason. And that was the reason why the world today has bonded together to fight the scourge of terrorism,” Duterte said.