League of provinces supports Martial Law extension in Mindanao

MANILA-- The League of Provinces of the Philippines (LPP) on Friday reiterated its support for President Rodrigo Roa Duterte's declaration of Martial Law and its extension in Mindanao.

"As local chief executives, we are firm in our resolve to support and ensure the success of the proactive action being taken by the Duterte administration to totally and completely address the 'forces within' Mindanao," the LPP said in a statement on Friday.

President Duterte declared the entire Mindanao island under Martial Law on May 23, 2017 after the Maute terrorists group led by brothers Omar and Abdullah Maute, together with Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) leader and alleged ISIS "emir" Isnilon Hapilon, took siege of Marawi City.

Under Proclamation No. 216 issued by President Duterte, Martial Law in Mindanao will have a 60-day limit under the 1987 Constitution, which will expire on July 22, 2017.

"We are cognizant of the urgent need for the extension to allow our government forces to continue with their operation, unhampered by deadlines and to focus more on the liberation of Marawi and its rehabilitation and rebuilding," it added.

Article VII, Section 18 of the 1987 Constitution reads: "Upon the initiative of the President, the Congress may in the same manner, extend such proclamation or suspension for a period to be determined by the Congress if the invasion or rebellion shall persist and public safety requires it."

Two days ago, President Duterte asked Congress to extend martial law in Mindanao until the end of 2017 due to the presence of terrorist groups in Mindanao.

"We, therefore, reiterate our support to President Duterte's declaration of Martial Law in Mindanao and for Congress' extension of the same pursuant to Article VII, Section 18 of the 1987 Constitution," the LPP said.

Source: Philippine News Agency

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