17 civilians killed in an "execution style" while 5 among them were be even beheaded; Maute group is "beyond evil"

The Scene of the Crime Operatives (SOCO) findings revealed the cause of death of 17 civilians' bodies recovered in the conflict-stricken city of Marawi.

Based on initial reports, Brig. Gen. Restituto Padilla stated that all of them were shot at the back of the head, similar to an "execution style" while 5 of them were even beheaded.

"Batay sa initial report na binigay po ng SOCO, lahat po ito ay na-execute o binaril at ang pawang pagkakapatay sa kanila ay binaril sa likuran, sa may uluhan, at execution style," said Armed Forces spokesperson Brig. Gen. Restituto Padilla Jr.

The number of civilians killed in the month-long siege in Marawi increased to 44.

"Lima 'dun ay sinasabing naputulan po ng ulo, ay 'yan po ay naging bahagi na rin report ngayong umaga na binigay sa atin," Padilla said. "So ang numero na ating binibigay sa ating talaan bilang namatay na civilian ay halos dumoble na po sa 44."

The bodies were recovered in Barangay Gadungan at around 11:40 am on Wednesday during a retrieval operation conducted by the joint forces of the hilippine National Police, Bureau of Fire Protection and civilian volunteers.

According to Padilla, the military are doing the best they can to end the conflict in the city.

"We are doing everything to hasten it," he said. Padilla also expressed his gratitude for the P370 million worth of firearms from China as a form of military assistance to the Philippines.

"Yung karamihan diyan ay assault rifle na puwede nating ipamahagi sa ating mga tropa na nasa bakbakan," Padilla stated and added that the firearms will be most likely to be used the siege in Marawi.

Due to increase in number of deaths and lack of ammunition, the ISIS-Maute are now torn in a feud among themselves, says Lt. Col. Jo-Ar Herrera.

During his speech at Camp Quintin Merecido in Davao, President Rodrigo is positive that the siege will end before the end of the month.

"The way it’s being evolving now, I think it will be a matter of days, Duterte said in a speech at Camp Quintin Merecido in Davao. "We are winning the war, do not worry," he added.

Meanwhile, Sen. Gringo Honasan said that the atrocities in Marawi City was "nothing new".

"May kasabihan na the more things change, the more they remain the same...This is nothing new to us, only the dates and the personalities have changed," Honasan said in a media forum held in San Juan City.

"Terrorism does not have any front lines. It has no boundaries... An Islamic State are ideas that must be fought with better ideas—good government," he added.

Honasan also said that the declaration of Martial law in Mindanao is not something to be worried about and instead, urged everyone to act and quit continue talking about the military rule for that is not the problem.

"Itong martial law, what I'm trying to say basically is do not worry. We cannot be paralyzed into an action just by worrying. We cannot continue to talk about this. We have to act. This is a small group, mostly young people, influenced not by politicians, but by religious leaders," Honasan said.

"When you are a young man with no family, no children, no job, limited education and you hear your religious leader telling you the only way to correct this historical injustice is to go into jihad—the armed struggle—that is an idea that has to be responded to by the delivery of basic services, food, shelter, clothing, education, health services. Start with that," he added.

Adding the current number of retrieved bodies of casualties, the death toll rised up to 422 in total, where 75 were killed-in-action military soldiers, 44 civilians and the remaining 302 were members of the Maute-ISIS group.

Source: GMA