DAVAO CITY, July 1, 2017 — President Rodrigo Duterte called on the New People’s Army (NPA) to heed the call of its own leadership and let the military focus its offensives away from the rebel group towards the ongoing siege in Marawi City.
“Kindly stop fighting,” Duterte said in his speech in Tagum, Davao del Norte.
Duterte’s statement comes days after he visited one of the latest casualties of an NPA attack.
The National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) last month released several orders to the NPA in reaction to the government’s moves about the crisis in Marawi.
At some point, the Communist movement ordered intensified attacks against government targets after President Duterte declared martial law in the entire island of Mindanao.
Eventually, the NDFP and CPP said it was willing to provide assistance to the government to fight against ISIS insurgents in Marawi City.
The latest order came on June 17 when the CPP/NDFP leadership told its armed group not to engage government troops.
However, the CPP said Duterte himself has not given an explicit order for troops to stop pursuing the rebels.