MANILA, June 20 (Xinhua) -- The spokesman of Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte said Tuesday it is "unlikely" that the southern Philippine city Marawi would become a hub of Islamist militants in the region.
He also rejected some American senators' proposal that the U.S. should send more troops to the Philippines.
"It's unlikely for Marawi to become a new hub for IS fighters. The Philippine military has already pre-empted the Maute group from establishing a wilayah or province in Marawi," presidential spokesman Ernesto Abella told a news conference.
U.S. lawmakers have reportedly expressed concern about the growing threats from the IS militants, particularly the possibility of making Marawi a center of their terrorist operations in the region. They also called for a bigger role for the U.S. forces in the campaign.
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