29 May 2017

News Story: Death toll in clashes in the Philippines climbs to 95

MANILA, May 28 (Xinhua) -- Government troops found eight bodies of civilians who were allegedly executed by militants in Marawi city in southern Philippines, bringing the death toll in the six-day clashes between army and militants to 95, a military spokesman said Sunday.

Brig, Gen. Restituto Padilla said the eight bodies, including women and a child, were found Saturday night and Sunday morning some 300 meters outside the Mindanao State University in Marawi, which has been under siege by Maute militants since Tuesday.

"The bodies (found) consist of four males, three females and a child," Padilla said, adding the discovery of the eight bodies "validates" reports that militants have indeed killed civilians.

"We are still validating other reports of atrocities by militants," Padilla said. To date, he said, 19 civilians have been confirmed to have been executed by militants.

So far, Padilla said, 61 militants have been killed in the firefight, and that 11 soldiers and four policemen have also been killed.

Padilla said in a statement the troops will continue "precision" air strikes and artillery fire at specific targets in the the city where the Maute militants are hiding.

Padilla said the ongoing military air strikes and military actions focus on freeing a still undetermined number of civilians trapped in the city's interiors.

Read the full story at Xinhua