Islamic State poses a growing threat to Southeast Asia

Published July 13, 2020, 12:49 AM

by manilabulletin_admin

By Associated Press

Southeast Asia’s jihadis who fought by the hundreds for the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria now have a different battle closer to home in the southern Philippines. And Washington is growing very concerned.

The recent assault by IS-aligned fighters on the Philippine city of Marawi has left more than 300 people dead. That exposed the shortcomings of local security forces and the extremist group’s spreading reach in a region where counterterrorism gains are coming undone.

In this June 12, 2017, file photo, protesters stage die-in with a banner reading "Stop the killings" during a rally near the Presidential Palace to denounce the Martial Law declaration of President Rodrigo Duterte after Muslim militants laid a siege of Marawi city in southern Philippines for three weeks, in Manila, Philippines. Southeast Asia’s jihadis who fought for the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria now have a different battle closer to home in southern Philippines. It’s a scenario raising significant alarm in Washington. The recent assault by IS-aligned fighters on the Philippine city of Marawi has left almost 300 people dead, exposing the shortcomings of local security forces and the extremist group’s spreading reach | AP Photo/Bullit Marquez, File | Manila Bulletin
In this June 12, 2017, file photo, protesters stage die-in with a banner reading “Stop the killings” during a rally near the Presidential Palace to denounce the Martial Law declaration of President Rodrigo Duterte after Muslim militants laid a siege of Marawi city in southern Philippines for three weeks, in Manila, Philippines. Southeast Asia’s jihadis who fought for the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria now have a different battle closer to home in southern Philippines. It’s a scenario raising significant alarm in Washington. The recent assault by IS-aligned fighters on the Philippine city of Marawi has left almost 300 people dead, exposing the shortcomings of local security forces and the extremist group’s spreading reach | AP Photo/Bullit Marquez, File | Manila Bulletin

Defense Secretary Jim Mattis told Congress last week that a long-running U.S. military operation to help Philippine forces contain extremist fighters was canceled prematurely three years ago. And some lawmakers, including from President Donald Trump’s Republican Party, want a bigger U.S. role.

 
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