Six lawmakers question Duterte's Martial Law, file resolution

Duterte declared Martial Law in Mindanao city on 23 May to suppress rising terror in different parts of the region.

Philippine troops rescue Filipino ship captain abducted by militants
Philippines troops in action. Reuters

Six Philippines lawmakers, who are members of the House of Representatives, filed a resolution at the Supreme Court questioning the constitutionality of the Martial Law declared by Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte.

On 23 May, Duterte declared Mindanao city to be under the state of Martial Law to suppress rising terror in different parts of the region.The law came after the sudden attack of at least 400 militants in Marawi City in the Southern Philippines.

Since the war broke out on May 23, the death toll has reached 175 mark. Moreover, the eyewitnesses say the number could still increase in the next few days.

The six lawmakers who signed the petition document before the supreme court are Gary Alejano, Teddy Baguilat, Emmanuel Billones, Edgar Erice, Edcel Lagman and Tom Villarin

The petition was submitted to the Supreme Court based on the following grounds: One there is no rebellion where the public safety requires, two pretended existence of rebellion, three the conflict was government-initiated, four the invasion is at most a threat akin to imminent danger and five the facts stated in Proclamation No. 216 are mostly inaccurate, false and hyperbolic.

Both the law-making bodies, the Congress and the Senate, separately passed a resolution supporting the declaration of martial law in Mindanao. Most lawmakers in both the Senate and Congress are allies of the Filipino President.

The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) continue to use air strikes on rebel in the area. The ongoing Marawi armed conflict has already killed 120 terrorists, 36 soldiers and 19 civilians. While there are 3,000 residents trapped in the crossfire, more than 100,000 residents flee out of Marawi to seek refuge in nearby cities and municipalities.

There are four major armed major militants battling soldiers in Marawi, who recently pledged alligiance to ISIS. They are the Abu Sayyaf Group, Ansar Khalifa, the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighers and the Maute Group, a Lanao-based miltant group who captured a town hall in Butig, Lanao del Sur but later re-captured by Philippine soldiers.