Philippine church says priest, churchgoers taken hostage

If there is open defiance, you will die. Fourteen people were killed and many more wounded.

De la Pena said the Maute militant allowed him to speak to Suganob to make sure he was clear of their demands.

Government forces are now battling a terrorist group linked to ISIS, which has attacked parts of Marawi City.

Archbishop Socrates Villegas, president of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines, said the hostages included 10 worshippers and three church employees, and that the militants were demanding the government withdraw its forces from the area.

The Catholic church said rebels had taken hostage Father Chito Suganob, a priest at Marawi's Cathedral of Our Lady Help of Christians, and several churchgoers.

"He was not a combatant".

Jones said the Maute group was sophisticated in its use of social media and was able to attract students and teachers from the Mindanao State University in Marawi. "His capture and that of his companions violates every norm of civilized conflict".

He added: 'They have threatened to kill the hostages if the government forces unleashed against them are not recalled'.

"The Mautes have shown an ability to absorb what would seem to be major losses in clashes with the police and military, suggesting that their organisation is larger and better organised that perhaps they have been given credit for", Jones said in the report.

Military intelligence said the Maute brothers also had links to two of the region's most risky militants - Indonesian Ustadz Sanusi and Malaysian bomb maker Zulkifli bin Hir, alias Marwan.

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The military has not explained how the raid on an apartment hideout went so badly wrong and resulted in Maute gunmen going on the rampage and taking over roads, bridges, buildings and a hospital.

State media similarly quoted the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) as saying the implementation of martial law would be done in accordance with existing laws and respect for human rights.

Duterte has faced global criticism for his violent approach to tackling the illegal drug trade.

A senior military official has claimed to have killed or wounded an undetermined number of militants.

The US and other Western governments warned this month that terrorists were planning to kidnap foreigners in other tourist hotspots in the western and central Philippines, adding to longstanding advisories of abduction threats in Mindanao. We can do that easily, " Ano said, but added it was more hard in an urban setting because of the need to avoid civilian casualties.

Provincial Vice Gov. Mamintal Adiong said late Wednesday that more troops had arrived in the city, which was dark because 80 percent was without electrical power.

He said the firefight happened at Markaz Barangay Basak Malutlut, Marawi City.

"Do not force my hands into it", said Duterte, who cut short his visit to Russian Federation to return to Manila.

At least one of those smaller groups, the Maute, was involved in the Marawi siege. They had learned Isnilon Hapilon was in the area, but according to Lorenzana, the military had not expected him to be backed up by "more or less 100 fighters" - many of whom were members of another ISIS-linked organization, the Maute Group.

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