24 May 2017
In light of what is happening in Marawi City, we call on our fellow Filipinos in Mindanao to be security conscious at all times and remain vigilant in your day to day activities. Rest assured that the situation in Marawi City is already contained. With the deployment of additional forces, it is only a matter of time before we take all these evil doers down. Secretary Delfin Lorenzana is on his way back from Russia with the President to personally oversee the situation.
The imposition of martial law in Mindanao is a necessary step in order for government security forces to stop the threat that these terrorists pose, who are mostly not originally from Marawi. As part of our operations, additional troops will be deployed to Marawi City to augment the forces already there.
The President’s verbal declaration is valid, and as such Martial Law has been in effect since 10 PM last night. We emphasize, however, that Martial Law does not suspend the Constitution but authorizes the Armed Forces of the Philippines to take over law enforcement operations from the Philippine National Police, and conduct arrests and searches in accordance with the rule of law and human rights.
Lastly, we appeal to the public to help our troops on the ground and counter the misinformation campaign from terrorist supporters by being very selective and responsible in sharing critical information on new media and other platforms. It is better to report any suspicious activities in your areas directly to the proper authorities.
What is happening in the city of Marawi and Mindanao is another challenge that we can overcome together. We must stand united against a common enemy- terrorists and the fear they want to sow among the innocent.