1.The Philippines, which is majority Catholic, has faced Muslim separatist movements for decades in Mindanao island with its significant Muslim population. The IS linked Maute group carries the black flag and insignia of IS, and like the better known Abu Sayyaf group has attacked both troops and civilians.Militants allied to the so-called Islamic State came out onto the streets of Marawi last week after the army attempted to capture a top militant leader.In response the Maute swarmed the city, taking over a hospital and burning down buildings. Many residents fled the city as clashes erupted, but a local official said about 2,000 people were unable to leave areas held by the militants.
2.The battle for Marawi began five days ago when the security forces failed to capture Isnilon Hapilon, believed to be the main IS leader in the Philippines.The military says it needs some time to regain control of the city. Troops are reported to be finding it difficult to dislodge dozens of Maute group fighters who appear to be well armed and still occupying buildings across much of Marawi.
3.At least 19 civilians have been killed in continuing clashes between the armed forces of the Philippines and Islamist insurgents in the city of Marawi, military officials say on Monday the 29th May.Some of those trapped in the city have called or sent text messages to a hotline to urge the military to refrain from further air strikes, provincial crisis management committee Chairman Zia Alonto Adiong said."Some have no food at all. Some fear for their lives," he told Reuters."This is a conflict that has gone beyond proportion. The magnitude of the degree of the damage and the people that are affected... it's really massive." .About 60 militants and 15 members of the security forces have been killed since Saturday, the army says.
4.The bodies were discovered by advancing soldiers this weekend.The military is attempting to recapture Marawi, on Mindanao island, after it was recently overrun by jihadists. Eight of the dead were found in a ravine outside the city, their hands tied and gunshot wounds to their heads.
5.The eight victims are believed to be carpenters who were part of an evacuation convoy stopped by rebels late on Saturday. They are believed to have been killed after they were unable to recite extracts form the Koran.
6.The Marawi region is a stronghold of the hardline Maute group, which has pledged allegiance to so-called Islamic State (IS).The Philippine military says it has made gains retaking Marawi city from Islamist militants amid clashes that have left about 100 people dead.
7.According to the military, militants now control only small pockets within the southern Philippine city. But there are still reports of fighting on the ground and thousands of civilians trapped. .Spokesman for the Philippines' Armed Forces said troops were in "complete control of the city except for certain areas" held by militants from the Maute group, the local militants who have declared allegiance to IS. He said that "around 40 to 50 armed elements" were still present in the city, but this may increase given the militants' activities on the ground including the freeing of more than 100 prisoners from a local jail.
8.He added that 18 military and police personnel had been killed and more than 61 Maute fighters are dead.Reports say the remaining fighters are still believed to be holding several hostages, including a priest and a number of Christians. 10.President Rodrigo Duterte declared martial law early last week on the southern island of Mindanao, where Marawi is located. Marawi is known as "Islamic City" in the Philippines for its Muslim-majority population. Most of the population of Marawi has left, but local officials believe as many as 2,000 are still trapped by the fighting.(Source: BBC News)