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ICC Note: The Philippine military said today they have captured the base of IS-linked Maute terrorists in the south, after they had tracked the emerging IS leader in S.E Asia, Abu Dar. They are verifying that the airstrike has killed 5 terrorists. The Maute group was responsible for the Marawi siege last May which killed over a thousand combatants and civilians, and displaced hundreds of thousands of residents.  

06/19/2018 Philippines (ABS-CBN) – The military on Tuesday said it has captured the campsite of Islamic State-linked Maute gunmen in the southern province of Lanao del Sur, following an air strike and bursts of gunfight that displaced thousands.

Government troops on Sunday attacked the extremist lair in Tubayawan town, after monitoring the presence of the reported new emir of the Islamic State in Southeast Asia, Abu Dar.

Soldiers were still hunting for 30 of Abu Dar’s followers after the fall of their campsite, said Col. Romeo Brawner, deputy commander of Joint Task Group Ranao.

“Nakita yung mga bunkers nila. Meron silang tower, merong foxholes, merong empty shells, may mga bala pa sila,” he said.

(We found their bunkers. They had towers, foxholes, empty shells and a cache of ammunition.)

The military has cordoned off the area to prevent any spillover of violence outside the province, but will no longer hold bomb runs, said Brawner.

Authorities, he said, were also validating reports that the airstrike killed 5 rebels.

Authorities have tagged Abu Dar as one of the leaders of a 5-month long siege by the ISIS-inspired Maute group in Marawi City last year. The fighting left much of the city in ruins and led to the declaration of martial law in the entire Mindanao.

Dar and 40 followers escaped from Marawi during the early days of the fighting, said Brawner.

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