De Lima seeks to bestow honor to fallen soldiers in Marawi siege


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Senator Leila M. de Lima has urged the Senate leadership to bestow due recognition to the heroism of the brave soldiers and policemen who died defending the country’s democracy against the Maute group in MarawiCity.

In Senate Resolution No. 411 she filed, De Lima proposed that the Senate as an institution honor the members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) who died fighting in Marawi.

“The Senate of the Philippines salutes the courage of the members of the AFP and the PNP, and honors the valor and heroism of those who sacrificed their lives to ensure that the country is safe and secure from the threats of terrorism,” she said in her resolution.

Last May 23, hundreds of armed men belonging to the Maute group attacked various government and private facilities and established checkpoints within Marawi City in Lanao de Sur, terrorizing the residents and inflicting casualties on the part of the government forces and civilians.

De Lima, a former justice secretary, said she believes that the entire nation owes highest respect to the government troops who have selflessly offered their lives in protecting the country’s democracy from Islamic extremist groups.

“This tragic loss of lives is greatly felt not only by the government, but is mourned by the entire Filipino nation, which lost gallant members of the uniformed service,” she said.

As of June 19, at least 62 soldiers and policemen have been killed in the line of duty since the start of the combined military and police operations to quell the Marawi siege.

De Lima has earlier warned the Duterte government against overlooking a possible humanitarian crisis looming in Marawi City following reports that hundreds of civilians who are still trapped in the conflict areas.

Some of these trapped civilians were reportedly forced to eat cardboard boxes in order to survive the deteriorating conditions in the area, notably the scarcity of food supplies, while awaiting military-police rescue.

Government figures show that as of June 13, about 65,198 families or 316,684 individuals have been displaced from Marawi City and Marantao in Lanao del Sur, 14,772 of whom are reportedly staying in 68 evacuation centers.

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