MANILA — Abu Sayyaf leader Isnilon Hapilon is reportedly still trapped inside Marawi City, AFP Chief-of-Staff Gen. Eduardo Año said in a briefing late Monday.
“He is still inside the Main Batle Area, based on (our latest) intelligence (and) he is considering other options (escaping, fleeing, etc) but as much as possible, we don’t want Hapilon to leave the Main Battle Area alive,” he said.
Fighting in Marawi City started last May 23 after government troops tried to arrest the bandit group chief and his cohorts.
It was disclosed that based on custodial debriefing of those who surrendered and captured Maute group terrorists, only Omar Maute, one of the founders of the lawless band, is still alive.
Maute group co-founder Abdullah and and prominent Maute siblings like Madi and Oto were killed in ongoing military operations, Año said.
He added that there are two surviving Maute siblings who are not considered important and significant in the operations against the terror group.
The AFP chief said that this information is still validated as of this posting, adding that an estimated 10 foreign terrorists from Indonesia and Malaysia, are believed to be helping the remaining Maute group terrorists in the ongoing clashes. (PNA)