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Thursday, May 25, 2017

Police to tighten security at borders following martial law in Mindanao

KUALA LUMPUR - Police will tighten security at the nation's borders, especially in waters adjacent to the Philippines following the declaration of martial law by Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte in the Mindanao region.

Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar said, however, the department will not increase the number of personnel required for the task.

"We have taken precautions, and are always beware of what is happening in neighbouring country Philippines," he said when contacted by Bernama yesterday.

Following the declaration, the Philippine military has ordered more than 200,000 people in the city of Marawi, Mindanao to leave their homes before 1pm today.

The order was issued shortly after Duterte’s spokesman, Ernesto Abella made an announcement on behalf of the president declaring martial law in the region yesterday, after fierce clashes between the army and the Islamic State militant group.

Meanwhile, a local resident who requested anonymity said most residents concurred with the military command, and moved to the cities of Zamboanga, Pagadian and Cotabato, about 10 to 12 hours away from Marawi.

The resident, when contacted by the Bernama News Channel via WhatsApp, said there were many military roadblocks and tight security checks along the roads to identify militants, mainly from Daesh and Abu Sayyaf.

President Duterte had earlier warned that martial law in Mindanao would be enforced for even up to a year if required, to curb terrorism. -- Bernama

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