CATHOLIC NEWS OF THE WEEK . Saturday, 9 September 2017

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Marawi residents call for control of their city

MANILA (SE): People who have been forced to flee the besieged city of Marawi took to the streets of Manila at the end of August in protest against the imposition of martial law in their island of Mindanao and demanded that the national government pull its head out of their governance affairs.
 
Muslim Mindanao has long been pushing for the right of self-determination and the people want to have the last say in how the rehabilitation of their mostly destroyed city is managed.
 
They also want to have the opportunity to restore their lives back to some normalcy, as currently many are living in evacuation centres where schooling has not been provided and Save the Children says that at least 60,000 children are running footloose and fancy free each day.
 
The children’s aid organisation called this a recipe for disaster, as there is no better way to foster extremism in children than to have them unoccupied with too much time on their hands to fill in.
 
Many residents who have been forced to flee the city are also blaming the administration of Rodrigo Duterte for the destruction of the central business district, saying that his refusal to negotiate with the Maute Group when the opportunity was offered in the very early days of the siege makes him responsible for the damage.

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