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U.S. joins battle as Philippines takes losses in besieged city

Saturday, June 10, 2017 - 00:54

The Philippines army says US special forces are helping them to retake the southern city of Marawi from IS-linked militants. Rough cut (no reporter narration)

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ROUGH CUT. NO REPORTER NARRATION. U.S. special forces have joined the battle to crush Islamist militants holed up in a southern Philippines town, the military said on Saturday (June 10). The Philippines military said the United States IS providing technical assistance to end the siege of Marawi City by fighters allied to Islamic State, which is now in its third week, but clarified it had no boots on the ground. The cooperation between the long-time allies is significant because President Rodrigo Duterte, who came to power a year ago, has taken a hostile stance towards Washington. Philippine Army spokesperson Lt. Col. Jo-Ar Herrera said there were "strong indications" two members of the Maute Islamist group, which has pledged allegiance to Islamic State, had been killed in operations, Philippines news channel ABS-CBN said. He said the military was still validating reports that Omar and Madie had died. The Philippines military suffered its biggest one-day loss on Friday since 10 troops were killed in a friendly-fire incident on June 1. Herrera said 13 marines conducting clearing operations died after an "intense" house-to-house firefight during which they encountered improvised explosive devices and were attacked by rocket-propelled grenades.

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U.S. joins battle as Philippines takes losses in besieged city

Saturday, June 10, 2017 - 00:54