MANILA-- Respect for International Humanitarian Law (IHL) and Human Rights (HR) is the reason why the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) is taking heavy casualties in the ongoing operations to clear Marawi City of the remaining Maute Group terrorists.
In the same vein, the military puts premium on civilian lives, unlike the lawless elements who indiscriminately fires weapons, regardless of the targets.
"Our losses are because we put premium on saving more civilian lives and complete respect for IHL/HR," AFP spokesperson Brig. Gen. Restituto Padilla said late Sunday.
However, to avoid more losses, he added that many adjustments will be made in the conduct of military operations in the remaining areas of Marawi City still being held by the Maute Group terrorists.
As of this posting, there are 58 government troops killed and around 120 wounded in the fighting which is now entering its fourth week.
Thirteen of the recent losses were Marine troopers who were killed in a major engagement which lasted for some 14 hours, erupted between Marine units and Maute Group terrorists at Barangay Lilot Madaya in Marawi City Friday.
Fighting started 3:30 a.m. and ended 5 p.m. of June 9. Around 40 were also reported wounded.
"Our men served with honor and we ask you to join us in prayer for the repose of their souls, strength for the bereaved families in this moment of grief and for peace in our land," Padilla concluded.
Source: Philippines News Agency