DAVAO CITY, Philippines — Seven members of the Presidential Security Group and two members of the 65th Infantry Battalion were hurt in an attack by still unidentified groups in Marawi City, Tuesday morning.

In an interview with Lt. Col. Michael Aquino, PSG spokesman, he said President Rodrigo Duterte’s advance party was going towards the area of the 103rd Brigade in Lanao del Sur when two improvised explosive device were detonated in Barangay Matampay in Marawi City.

Aquino told Davao Today that one of the PSG personnel is in critical condition. He said the casualties were airlifted to a hospital in Cagayan de Oro City.

Meanwhile, the identities of the casualties are still withheld pending the notification of their families.

The Office of the Communications Secretary of Malacañang in a statement said the convoy of the PSG is joined by Radio TV Malacanang (RTVM), and local troop escorts.

Aquino could not say whether Duterte’s visit to the area will push through as this will be scheduled by Malacañang.

President Duterte was set to lead the inauguration of the Mega Drug Abuse Treatment and Rehabilitation Center – Phase 1 inside Fort Ramon Magsaysay when the incident happened. He was scheduled to visit the government troops in Lanao who were conducting military operations against the Maute group.

“We will assess the situation so we can give the best advise for the security of the President,” Aquino said.

Malacañang assured that the casualties will be given attention.

“The President has consistently expressed concern for uniformed personnel who bravely walk in harm’s way so we can live in peace and freedom. We assure our brave men and women who put their lives on the line for duty and country that their Commander-in-Chief will never abandon them in their time of need,” it said.(davaotoday.com)

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