20 terror cells in PH looking to do ISIS’ bidding – OSG

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Fle photos of Omarkhayam Maute and Abdullah Maute from Philstar. Besides the Maute Group, 19 other terrorist cells are all looking to help set up a "caliphate" in the Philippines, the OSG said in its memorandum to the Supreme Court.

MANILA – Twenty terrorist cells in all are allied with the Maute Group that is leading the three-week siege of Marawi City, and are all working to set up a caliphate in the South on behalf of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS).

The Office of the Solicitor General revealed this in the memorandum it submitted Monday to the Supreme Court, which last week heard oral arguments on petitions questioning the basis for martial law in Mindanao, as declared by President Duterte hours after the Marawi siege began May 23.

The three top allies of the Maute Group are the Abu Sayyaf Group, the Ansarul Khilafah Philippines, and the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters.

Besides these three groups helping the Mautes, the others were listed by the OSG as:

Ansar Dawiah Fi Filibbin
Rajah Solaiman Islamic Movement
Al Harakatul Islamiyah Battalion
Jama’at Ansar Khilafa
Ansharul Khilafah Philippines Battalion
Bangsamoro Justice Movement
Khilafah Islamiya Mindanao h. Abu Sayyaf Group (Sulu faction)
Syuful Khilafa Fi Luzon
Ma’rakah Al-Ansar Battalion
Dawla Islamiyyah Cotabato
Dawlat Al Islamiyah Waliyatul Masrik
Ansar Al-Shariyah Battalion
Jamaah al-Tawhid wal Jihad Philippines
Abu Dujanah Battalion
Abu Khubayn Battalion
Jundallah Battalion
Abu Sadr Battalion
Jamaah Al Muhajirin wal Anshor
Balik-Islam Group

The OSG said the four leading groups have been waging coordinated attacks.

These attacks are focused in Basilan, Sulu, Tawi-tawi, the Zamboanga peninsula and the Davao provinces.

The attacks are not simply meant to terrorize people but eventually set up a wilayat, or province for ISIS, officials said. The OSG said the groups are also planning bombing attacks.

The Maute Group is led by the brothers Omarkhayam and Abdullah. Their father Cayamora and their mother Ominta Romato-Maute alias “Farhana” were separately arrested last week.