Lawmakers slam Alvarez's proposal to extend martial law to 2022

Posted July 11, 2017

'IMBECILIC' For its part, the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) slammed the government's "plan" to extend martial law in Mindanao and criticized Mr. Duterte's decision to exclusively rely on the military in deciding when to end the declaration.

Martial law in Mindanao was implemented nighttime of May 23 following the attack of Maute Group terrorists in Marawi City.

He said a recommendation will be made to Duterte once the military is satisfied it has flushed out all terrorist elements from the region.

Padilla said, although he was unaware of where Alvarez was coming from, he admitted declaring or extending martial law would be a political decision.

"I can not give you a categorical answer because the assessment for the extension of martial law is still being undertaken and we have not finished this yet", Padilla told a press briefing at the Palace on Monday.

The declaration of martial law in Mindanao may have prompted a sudden decline in Duterte's approval ratings in the region, but the president gained approval in other parts of the country.

Both the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and Philippine National Police chiefs already said they would likely recommend the extension of martial law given the continuing conflict in Marawi.

'Are you in favor of making martial law last until 2022, until the end of the term of our President?' They said they were in favor.

Ejercito earlier pointed out that since there have been no atrocities or any human rights violations committed since the imposition of martial law, "it will be easier to justify (its) extension if needed".

"As the troops of the Western Mindanao Command intensify the offensives against the remaining terrorist group in Marawi, government agencies also continue to generate means and programs in order to support the displaced persons in all evacuation centers", he said.

"Government has trailed it focus on the reconstruction and rehabilitation of Marawi as the defeat of the Maute-ISIS Group looms with the military operations and the cooperation of local government", he added.

"When our soldiers' lives are at risk, they take appropriate measures to defend themselves and that is allowable even by the Geneva Convention".

"This is a testament of the government's resolve to fully rehabilitate Marawi and help our Maranao brothers and sisters stand and rebuild the city", Galvez said. In a daily briefing on July 10, the military reported that more than 450 terrorists, 39 civilians, and 89 military and police personnel have been killed in the siege, which shows no sign of abating despite military claims that the militants have been confined to a small area and reduced to less than 100 fighters.

"Our efforts on the ground are also focused (on) rescuing civilians who are still trapped".