Philippine President: “no talk with the terrorists”

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte said he will not talk to Muslim elements who are fighting the military and occupying parts of Marawi city, and that he is determined to keep IS out of the Philippines.

Duterte made the statement to the military in Davao city on Wednesday. Last week, he urged Maute militants to talk with him last week.

A bloody week-long assault by Islamist rebels in Marawi is being fueled by stolen weapons and ammunition and fighters breaking out of jails, the military said on Wednesday, as troops battled rebels who are resisting ground and air attacks. The military deployed for the first time SF-260 close air support planes to back attack helicopters and ground troops looking to box fighters into a downtown area. Presidential spokesperson Ernesto Abella said at least 129 people have been killed in the Marawi fighting. The fatalities include 89 gunmen, 21 government soldiers, and 19 civilians.

Source: VOV5