ZAMBOANGA CITY, (PNA) -– President Benigno Simeon Aquino III is focused on the resolution of the standoff here between the government forces and Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) members.
Local Government Secretary Manuel Roxas II disclosed late Monday afternoon that President Aquino is at the operation center inside a military camp since his arrival here Friday.
Roxas said that President Aquino has also ordered the different concerned line agencies of government to provide front line services to the evacuees and the residents of this city while the troops are continuously pounding the rebels’ positions.
Roxas also disclosed that a team of prosecutors on orders of the President are here to hasten the filing of cases against those responsible in the standoff.
Armed Forces’ Public Affairs Officer Lt. Col. Ramon Zagala disclosed that the troops have already recovered 70 percent of the areas occupied by the rebels.
“The AFP is pushing forward. We are gaining grounds,” Zagala said, citing the safety of the hostages is still of paramount concern.
So far, 51 MNLF rebels have been killed while 26 others were captured at the height of the firefight, according to PNP Deputy Director General Felipe Rojas, Jr.