Troops recapture Grand Mosque and Marawi City police station from Maute terrorists

Government troops finally wrestled control of the Marawi City police station and the Grand Mosque in Marawi City from the IS-affiliated Maute terrorists after three months of intense fighting, according to The Manila Times Online report on Friday.

Military spokesman Brig-Gen Restituto Padilla Jr.  said Thursday that government forces took control of the police station on Tuesday.  Before that, troops cleared nine structures inside the main battle zone where at least 29 buildings were recaptured.

Padilla said the terrorists used the mosque as a storage area.

“Our use of artillery fire in several places occupied by the enemy are still ongoing and air strikes or air support, close air support from our Air Force is also continuing,” said Padilla.

He added that Maute leaders Isnilon Hapilon, Abdullah and Omarkhayam Maute are still inside the battle zone.

At least 300 buildings in Marawi City have yet to be cleared of explosives and booby traps.

So far, 129 soldiers have been killed in the operations while 45 civilians were also killed by the terrorists.  At least 595 terrorists were slain by government forces.