Philippine Vice President Leni Robredo during his visit in Batangas Province spoke about the importance of US military presence in the Philippines especially in addressing the on-going armed conflict in Marawi.
Robredo was quoted by the Philippine Daily Inquirer as saying, "I am thankful to the Unites States for helping our Philippine forces in fighting the Maute Militant Group in Marawi City and the Philippines should continue to nurture her relationship with her traditional ally."
The lady vice president added that the help of US military is the essence of community of nations as she cited the importance of these relationships with other countries.
Despite their political affiliation differences, Robredo also appealed to the public to support the President's counterterrorism campaign that will eventually stabilize the situation to keep the Southern Philippines region safe and stable.
As the fierce battle in Marawi entered its third week, residents of the Islamic City saw an American P3 Orion surveillance aircraft hovering over the City.
Thus, the US embassy also confirmed that they are assisting the Philippine troops battle around 200 terrorists who showed strong resistance from their positions but they refused to provide the technical details because the assistance involved is confidential that involves the security of soldiers.
Responding to media questions, the US embassy said in a press statement that the US is a proud ally of the Philippines and will continue to work with the Philippines to address shared threats to peace and security and that includes counterterrorism.
The Department of National Defense (DND) admitted that they sought the U.S. military assistance because the Philippine military does not have enough surveillance equipment to monitor the movements of the enemy.
The report that US special forces and aircraft surveillance was made known to the public a few days after a Philippine aircraft launched airstrikes on Marawi that killed 10 Philippine soldiers and wounded 7 others due to communications lapses.
The Philippine government forecast that the armed conflict will end in June 12 but exchanges of gunfires and sounds of explosions continued on the day of the deadline showing signs the conflict might extend a little longer.