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Duterte Appeals To Marawi Residents To Help Keep Terrorists From Entering Their City
This file photo shows smoke rising from the area where pro-Islamic group militants are a final stand against government troops in Marawi city on Oct. 19, 2017. And from this ruins, President Duterte, on his eighth visit to the city, pledged adequate funds that rehabilitate and beautify the ravaged city once more. (AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)
January 31st, 2018 | 10:20 AM | 1022 views
President Duterte has vowed adequate funds to rebuild a better Marawi City but appealed to residents to help prevent terrorism from infiltrating their community again.
In his return visit to Marawi City on Tuesday, the President warned of “massive destruction” and “loss of lives” if terrorists launch another siege of the city.
“I beg of you not to allow them to enter because it will just cause massive destruction and the loss of lives including the innocent ones who are really helpless in case of war,” Duterte said during the initial turnover of temporary houses for families displaced by the five-month terror siege.
“Let us try to avoid terrorism. It is not the correct way to obey Islam. You do not kill and destroy for no reason,” he said.
Duterte admitted he considered what had happened to Marawi City a “nightmare” when it was attacked by terrorists several months ago.
The President flew back to Marawi to lead the groundbreaking rites of a new military camp and inspect the Bahay Pag-asa shelter project for displaced families. He also led the distribution of certificates of acceptance and occupancy of transitory shelter units at Barangay Sagonsongan.
It was the President’s eighth visit to Marawi since the conflict started last May 2017. The city, left in ruins, was liberated from the clutches of terrorists last October.
In the same speech, the President assured the governments’ steadfast support for the Marawi community to recover the conflict.
“I will guarantee you that in the remaining years, there will always be money for you that will be able to rehabilitate your businesses,” he said. “I am always here to help you,” he added.
Once the rebuilding is complete, Duterte encouraged the Marawi residents to “invite everybody” including Christians to visit their place.
“Pag gumanda na ito, invite everybody, invite the Christians because they want to see Lake Lanao. Just provide them security. Puro tayo Pilipino (Once the place is beautified, invite everybody, invite the Christians because want to see Lake Lanao. Just provide them security We are all Filipinos),” he said.
He added that they should “redirect” their mindset and allow progress to flourish in the city. “You will need the Christians as the Christians need the Muslim population.. so we can improve the lives better than what our parents gave us,” he said.
He said it was better to live in harmony than in conflict despite having different religions, adding they should emulate Zamboanga or Malaysia. “Bakit tayo dito nagpapatayan? [Why are we killing each other here?] he asked.
Before ending his speech, the President lauded anew the bravery of the government troops that fought the terrorists during the five-month siege.
courtesy of MANILA BULLETIN
by Genalyn D. Kabiling
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