Press Release
June 7, 2017


SEN. WIN: The video was shown in executive session but for obvious reasons, none of us could disclose it. When we saw the video, I was convinced that martial law was needed especially when I visited Iligan City last weekend. Nakausap ko si Mayor Majul of Marawi, sinabi niya sakin na noong araw na pumasok ang mga Maute group pilit silang pumasok sa city hall para i-take over ang city hall at itaas ang ISIS flag. The Mayor gave us a lot of details kung paano nila ito nilabanan. Good thing kasama niya yung mga pulis para labanan yung pag take-over ng MAUTE. I think that confirms the story and information from AFP na it was really an attempt to raise the flag of ISIS in Marawi.

Q: Sir, ano yung yung detalye doon sa video na inookupa nila yung sa Marawi?

SEN. WIN: Yung nakita ko sa video, I cannot link that to the story of the Mayor. Wala samin yung drawing at that time but I think what is really clear to me was consistent yung story ng intelligence group noong binigyan kami ng briefing on what happened on the ground. First-hand information came from Mayor Majul who was there during the peak of the take-over of the Maute group.

Q: on Sec Aguirre's allegations against Senators Bam and Trillanes and others...

SEN. WIN: Hindi ko alam yung kay Senator Trillanes, but noong nanggaling si Senator Bam sa Marawi andun din ako sa CDO. In fact, we were in the airport noong nagkita kami. Nagkwentuhan kami and nakita ko kasama niya ang mga youth leaders from Marawi City. Wala naman akong nakitang any other people aside from the youth group. Ang alam ko kasi ang advocacy ni Senator Bam is all about youth. So I doubt if Senator Bam is linked to this whole thing. I don't think it's possible, nagkasama lang kami that time.

Q: When was that?

SEN. WIN: Pumunta ako last May 19, 2017 para sa general assembly ng MORESCO I. Siya, nanggaling sa Marawi City for a youth activity tapos nagkita lang kami sa airport.

Q: Kay Senator Bam. Eh kay Senator Trillanes?

SEN. WIN: Di ko alam, wala akong alam dun.

Q: [inaudible]

SEN. WIN: In the end, it all boils down to evidence. I think we should also be very careful with linking people with whatever instances dahil masisira yung reputation ng tao kung wala naman connection. Let's be fair, kung wala naman connection, mahirap i-link kung sinuman sa pangyayari. In the end it will boil down kung ano man ang ipapakita ng ebidensya.

Q: Balik lang ako sa video, is there something we should be worried about kasi actively planning yung mga grupo?

SEN. WIN: Yes, we have to be worried also. Itong mga grupo na ito aktibong gumagalaw. In fact when I went to Iligan and Saguiaran towns, which is just two towns away from Marawi City, nakipag-dialogue ako with the local officials and talagang in that area daw gumagawala itong mga grupong ito. Marami din silang sympathizers. We were briefed by the Military that these sympathizers were also armed groups like the Abu Sayyaf. We have to be worried because the landscape of rebellion has really changed over the last ten years and the biggest change is ISIS and it was confirmed by the Indonesian intelligence that they're already here in the region. Hirap sila ngayon sa Middle East, so now they're here in the region. I think this is one major difference between what was rebellion before and what is rebellion now.

Q: So after watching the video, is it rebellion or terrorism?

SEN. WIN: I think naghalo na e. I cannot differentiate now if it's terrorism or rebellion. I mean if you try to establish a territory by force within a sovereign country I think it is purely rebellion.

Q: [inaudible]

SEN. WIN: Alam niyo what's happening on the ground changes every minute, every second. Nag-iiba ang situation on the ground so information and assessment changes. Dumami yung sympathizers, dumami yung sumali so it's really difficult to assess what's really happening on the ground. That's why I would like to give the military enough elbow room to strategize. Importante dito manalo tayo, importante dito makuha natin ulit ang Marawi City.

Q: [inaudible]

SEN. WIN: From my assessment when I went there nakausap ko rin yung local government officials and the relatives themselves, marami pa daw naiwan sa Marawi City. In fact yung mga evacuees nung kausap ko sila, marami pa silang kausap doon na naiwan. Yung iba kasi natatakot na baka mawala yung mga ari-arian nila yung iba naman na-trap. So definitely hindi madaling pasukin o bombahin ang buong lugar dahil marami pang civilians na andoon.

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