Six months after battles ensued between government troops and forces from ISIS-inspired Maute group in Marawi City and declaration of martial law in the whole of Mindanao, 400,000 residents who flee from the gunfighting and aerial bombardments are still in evacuation centers and in “home-based” evacuation areas.
To render relief service including food packs, medical and psychosocial intervention and conduct human rights documentation, RPRD joined the 3rd National Interfaith Humanitarian Mission from November 15-18, 2017..
NIHM 3 was led by Kalinaw Mindanao, a gathering of different organizations, including religious organizations such as the Rural Missionaries of the Philippines-Northern Mindanao who are advocating for just peace in the war-torn island.
This NIHM 3 was also joined by human rights advocates from other countries who were in the International Solidarity Mission of the International Coalition for Human Rights in the Philippines.
The NIHM gathered in IFI Lapasan, Cagayan de Oro City before proceeding to different evacuation sites in Iligan City and Saguiaran, Lanao del Norte. Aside from relief services, the mission hoped to document and expose human rights violations committed continuously behind the “anti-terrorism” military campaign and operations.
RPRD, in one of its interviews, came across testimonies from the residents about the looting of their properties, including appliances, store merchandise and construction materials, by those “privileged to access the city”.
(Read more at Tindeg Ranao, an organization of internally displaced persons (IDPs) from Marawi City, calls for justice for the massive humanitarian crisis and for sustained relief, indemnification and genuine rehabilitation and vows to reclaim Marawi City.