This is a news update from our Missionary Ventures Office in New Zealand called MOTIVATE
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The recent bombing that tragically targeted children in Manchester, and the slaughter of Coptic Christians in Egypt, remind us again that our world is facing new challenges through terrorism – and as Christians we need to pray for all who are affected.
Another critical situation on the island of Mindanao in the southern Philippines intensified this week after decades of conflict in the Southern Philippines with thousands leaving the city of Marawi after ISIS-inspired fighters attempted to seize control of the city.
We were on Mindanao last month, and asked our co-workers for their perspective on the current situation:
“The troubles in Marawi started when there was a raid by the military to capture Hapnilon, the leader of Abu Sayyaf who used to sow terror in Sulu. This is the same group that conducts kidnap for ransom activities. Because the Government has been conducting a massive military operation in Sulu to flush out and neutralize the group, Hapnilon escaped and hid in Marawi.
When the military was conducting the raid, the Maute group – a small terror group who are from Marawi – came to the rescue and that started what is happening right now in Marawi because they commandeered some installations and took civilians as hostages, and killed some.
When this happened our president was in Russia on a working visit. He declared martial law in Mindanao while he was there and came back home immediately to personally handle the problem.
The Maute Group just like Abu Sayyaf are very dangerous because they don’t have a definite ideology except to sow terror, so that’s why Duterte has to deal with it the way it’s being dealt presently. This group is seeking recognition from ISIS and are doing what they are doing right now to get funding from them. They are flying ISIS flags but according to our sources they are not yet recognized by ISIS.
From our perspective, we from Mindanao fully support what the government and Duterte is doing right now – Martial Law. This will last for 60 days.
What the government, NGO’s and church are doing right now is to take care of the evacuees until everything will return to normal.
PLEASE PRAY FOR MINDANAO!”