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Christians and Muslims pray amid Marawi’s ruins

MARAWI (UCAN): Led by Father Teresito Soganub, the parish priest of St. Mary’s Cathedral, in the devastated city of Marawi in Mindanao, a group Christians and Muslims held an interfaith prayer service in the ruins of the church and a mosque on July 27.
 
Marawi which was devastated by a five-month siege in 2017 during which Father Soganub was kidnapped and held hostage by terrorist gunmen. The conflict left a trail of death, destruction, and displaced thousands of people.
 

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Rebuild of Marawi cathedral on hold

MARAWI (UCAN): The rebuilding of St. Mary’s Cathedral in the Marawi, in Lanao del Sur, Mindanao, will have to wait until mosques are restored in the war-ravaged city according Brother Reynaldo Barnido, executive director of the non-government Duyog Marawi (Together Marawi) group.
 
The church was desecrated and burned by terrorist gunmen when they attacked the country’s so-called Islamic capital in May 2017, kicking off a five-month conflict.
 

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Marawi recovering but rights abuses lamented

MANILA (UCAN): The physical rehabilitation of Marawi, in Lanao del Sur, Mindanao, the Philippines, has yet to take off two years after the end of a five-month siege in which extremist gunmen, claiming allegiance with the Islamic State, were ousted by government forces. 
 
Marawi was attacked on 23 May 2017. The ensuing battle hammered the city until 23 October 2017 and displaced about half a million people.
 
However, officials said the people are on their way to being well.
 

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Slow pace of Marawi recovery under fire

MANILA (UCAN): Thousands of people remain in temporary shelters more than 18 months after Philippine troops ended a five-month conflict with Islamic militants in the southern city of Marawi that displaced close to half a million people.
 
The United Nations (UN) Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) estimated that about 66,000 people are still homeless.
 
Some are staying with relatives in nearby areas, while an estimated 4,500 people are still at four evacuation centres, the OCHA said.

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Appeals for help in education of Marawi’s children

COTABATO (UCAN): A year after the end of the conflict in Marawi, in Mindanao, the southern Philippines, over 100,000 children have yet to return to school, according to the United Nations’ Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs. Almost half a million people were affected by the five-months of fighting that ensued after extremist gunmen from the Maute Group attacked the city in May last year.
 

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Displaced Marawi families given meat for Eid

COTABATO (UCAN): Islamic Relief Worldwide, an international relief organisation, distributed at least 3,870 kilogrammes of meat to 1,800 displaced families living in temporary shelters on the outskirts in war-torn Marawi in the southern Philippines to mark the observance of Eid al-Adha (Feast of the Sacrifice) on August 22.
 
Maryann Zamora, a spokesperson for the group in the Philippines, said the animals were slaughtered to commemorate the willingness of Abraham to sacrifice even his son to God.
 

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Priest still haunted by captivity

MARAWI (UCAN): A year after his abduction by terrorist gunmen, Father Teresito Soganub, the one time vicar-general of the Prelature of Marawi, Mindanao, is on a journey for forgiveness.
 
“I was a captive. I was not afraid to die, but I was afraid to suffer,” he said in what sounded like a confession only days before the first anniversary of his kidnapping during an attack on St. Mary’s Cathedral.
 
He was abducted along with several church workers on 23 May 2017, the first day of fighting.








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Catholics in Marawi join Muslims in observing Ramadan

MARAWI (UCAN) Catholics in the battle-scarred southern Philippine city of Marawi, Mindanao, have joined the predominantly Muslim community in welcoming the start of the Islamic month of Ramadan.
 
A thousand Catholic and Muslim residents participated in the start of the Duyog Ramadan (One with Ramadan) celebration spearheaded by the Catholic territorial prelature in the city’s Datu Saber district on May 13.
 

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Marawi Mosque reopens in time for Ramadan

MARAWI (UCAN): The Saduc-Guimba Grand Mosque in the village of Saduc, in war-ravaged Marawi, has re-opened in time for the start of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan on May 15, almost a year after terrorist gunmen attacked the predominantly Muslim city in Mindanao, the Philippines.
 
The Philippine military earlier declared the area where the mosque is located, cleared of explosives that might have been left during the five months of fighting.
 

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Marawi Cathedral to be demolished

MANILA (UCAN): The 84-year-old St. Mary’s Cathedral in Marawi, Mindanao, will soon fall to the wrecking ball to pave the way for the rebuilding of the war-torn city.
 
Authorities said the cathedral and the bishop’s residence are no longer structurally sound because of bomb explosions, air strikes and exchanges of gunfire during the conflict.
 
Terrorist gunmen set the cathedral on fire on 23 May 2017 and took Father Teresito Suganob, the vicar general, along with several church workers and worshipers hostage.

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