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24 Dec 2019 | 05:23 AM UTC

Philippines: Martial law to be lifted in Mindanao December 31 /update 10

Authorities to lift martial law in Mindanao from December 31; heightened security presence likely to persist over the coming weeks

security
PHL

Event

Authorities announced on Tuesday, December 10, that the martial law will not be renewed in Mindanao after its expiration on Tuesday, December 31. The government cited its success in dismantling extremist networks and the improvement of the security environment in the region since the martial law was first implemented in May 2017.

A heightened security presence is, nevertheless, expected to persist in the region in the coming weeks, with curfews to remain in place in Marawi in the Lanao Del Sur province.

Context

Mindanao island has been under martial law since May 23, 2017, in response to the attack and siege of the city of Marawi lead by the Islamic State (IS), during which around 1000 people were killed and 60,000 displaced.

Advice

Individuals in Mindanao are advised to monitor the situation, and obey all instructions issued by the local authorities.

As a reminder, some Western governments formally advise against travel to southwestern Mindanao and to the Sulu Archipelago due to terrorist activity, regular clashes between the military and insurgent groups, and the risk of kidnapping by Abu Sayyaf group.