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Battle for Marawi nears ends with death of IS head

South East Asia

Battle for Marawi nears ends with death of IS head

Image of Hapilon used on US government posters. Credit: Wikipedia

Two Islamic state leaders have been killed by the Phillipine Army during fighting in the city of Marawi Marawi in the Mindanao region of the southern Philippines.

The deaths of Isnilon Hapilon, head of Islamic State, and Omarkhayam Maute, another militant leader, took place as the four-month siege of Marawi appears to be nearing its bloody and protracted close.

In May 2017 around 100 Jihadists seized control, taking Christians hostage and using them as human shields. They torched churches as thousands of residents fled. Some hostages who escaped have reported that they were made to build bombs for Islamic State.

The militants that government forces have been battling with have campaigned for Mindanao to become an Islamic state governed by sharia. The Times reports that the battle in Marawi appears to be nearing its end.

Islamic State leader, Hapilon, had a price on his head of $5 million offered by the US government. In 2001 he kidnapped three Americans from an island beach resort. One of the hostages was a Christian missionary who died during a rescue attempt while his wife survived with injuries. Another hostage was beheaded.