Thursday, August 10, 2017

Troops recover armored van seized by Maute gunmen

From GMA News (Aug 9): Troops recover armored van seized by Maute gunmen

An armored vehicle seized by ISIS-inspired Maute group leader Abdullah Maute during the early days of the Marawi City siege has been recovered by the government, the AFP Western Mindanao Command announced Wednesday.

Westmincom spokesperson Captain Jo-ann Petinglay said the vehicle was recovered at an abandoned building in the war-torn city after heavy gunfire between the militants and the military on August 4.

"The vehicle was recovered by troops of the Joint Task Force Marawi following heavy gunfire with Maute remnants in a strategic structure previously held by terrorists," Petinglay said.

The blue armored vehicle, owned by the Davao Security and Investigation Agency Inc., went viral on social media as the terrorists hoisted an ISIS flag on it as they roam Marawi City.

Petinglay said soldiers also saw the Maute group use the same vehicle in attacking government law enforcers.

"Soldiers also said that they have seen terrorists using the same armored car when attacking soldiers' positions," Petinglay said.

She added that a tunnel used for food storage, bullets, and weapons were also found in the building

Meanwhile, Petinglay said four "healthy and unharmed" male civilians were rescued in the vicinity of Lake Lanao and underwent debriefing procedures.

"The rescued civilians were immediately brought to the nearest Army headquarters and were given immediate medical attention," Petinglay said.

As of August 6, a total of 528 Maute members, 122 government troops and 45 civilians have been killed since the clashes broke out last May 23.

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