Violence in ARMM due to illegal drugs grow 6x 2015 to 2016 but rebels, extremists cause more deaths – International Alert

By Tricia Aquino, News5 | InterAksyon | December 1, 2017 Violent incidents related to illegal drugs grew almost six-fold in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao from 2015 to 2016, coinciding with the launch of President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs when he assumed office. But peace building organization International Alert Philippines observed: “Despite the increase in drug-related incidents, the death toll from illicit drugs was still lower than those caused by political violence … A long history of revenge-killings in the Muslim Mindanao region and the likely clan feuding that may be unleashed may have led to a more…Read more

Drug trade, gun-running to continue fuelling violent extremism in Mindanao: Experts

By Raul Dancel, The Straits Times | November 30, 2017 MANILA - Shadow economies, underpinned by illegal drug trade and gun-running, will continue to fuel violent extremism and attacks on urban areas in the insurgency-wracked southern Philippine island of Mindanao, experts have warned. "The problem remains. The Maute group may have been effectively defeated in the case of Marawi, but not in the case of the ideology. The ideology remains," Mr Francisco Lara, Philippine manager of the World Bank-funded think-tank International Alert, said at a news briefing. The ultra-radical Maute group, formed in 2013 by brothers Abdullah and Omarkhayam Maute,…Read more

Group warns of revenge killings, rise in clan feuding in Marawi

By Jee Y. Geronimo, Rappler | November 30, 2017 MANILA, Philippines – Peacebuilding organization International Alert Philippines on Wednesday, November 29, warned about two looming problems related to identity that may erupt in Marawi City in the next few months. "One, there will be those who will seek revenge. They lost their property, they lost their loved ones, and they want revenge – that's one potential source, and it's classic rido, clan feuding, that may happen," International Alert Philippines country manager Francisco Lara Jr said during the launch of the Conflict Alert 2017. The second possible problem, according to Lara, is related to…Read more

International Alert warns of 2 post-Marawi sources of violence, calls for BBL’s passage

 By Tricia Aquino, InterAksyon | November 30, 2017 MANILA, Philippines — Peace-building organization International Alert Philippines has warned of two possible sources of violence that may erupt in Marawi City shortly after the war between terrorist groups and government forces in the Lanao del Sur capital: first are people who are seeking revenge for the loss of their families and/or property, and second are issues that have to do with overlapping land claims in the South. At the same time, International Alert Philippines stresses that the passage of the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) needs to happen soon, to prevent more…Read more

Marawi rehab: ‘Build communities resilient to threat of extremism’

By Jee Y. Geronimo, Rappler | November 29, 2017 MANILA, Philippines – Peacebuilding organization International Alert Philippines on Wednesday, November 29, urged the government to make sure that the rehabilitation of Marawi City will include efforts to build communities that are resilient to the threat of extremism. During the launch of Conflict Alert 2017 on Wednesday, International Alert Philippines country manager Francisco Lara Jr pointed out that the rehabilitation so far seems to be a "physical type of response."  "Actually if you look at the plan, it's almost a remake of Yolanda [rehabilitation]. In fact, we've heard that some of the resources…Read more

Cotabato City unlikely to be ‘the next Marawi,’ says peace NGO

By Marlly Rome Bondoc, GMA News | November 29, 2017 The possibility of Cotabato City being "the next" Marawi City is unlikely, as the Maute group would not be able to easily mobilize there due in part to the city's more diverse population, a non-government organization said Wednesday. At the launch of International Alert Philippines' Conflict Alert 2017 report "Guns, Drugs, and Extremism: Bangsamoro's New Wars," country manager Francisco "Pancho" Lara, Jr. said that Cotabato City is a "totally different ball game" from Marawi City. "First of all, we do not think that they will be able to mobilize the…Read more

ARMM saw ‘explosion of violence’ in 2016 – report

By Jee Y. Geronimo, Rappler | November 29, 2017 MANILA, Philippines – The Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) saw an "explosion of violence" in 2016, according to the latest Conflict Alert launched by International Alert Philippines on Wednesday, November 29. "There were 4,356 incidents in 2016, or an 89% increase from the previous year's 2,303 incidents. All provinces in ARMM saw increases in conflict incidents to more than double their previous year numbers in the case of Maguindanao (including Cotabato City), Basilan (including Isabela City), and Tawi-Tawi," the 63-page report said.  Lanao del Sur saw the smallest increase (22%)…Read more

Study shows conflict incidents spike in ARMM in 2016

By Marlly Rome Bondoc, GMA News | November 29, 2017 The Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) saw an "explosion of violence" in 2016, with conflict incidents recorded mostly in Maguindanao although most deaths were in Basilan, according to the Conflict Alert report released Wednesday. The report titled "Guns, Drugs, and Extremism: Bangsamoro's New Wars" said the violence in ARMM occurred amid the holding of national elections and the "coming to power of a new administration dedicated to eradicating the drug problem in the Philippines." The 63-page report, which was developed by International Alert Philippines, showed that there were a…Read more

Report confirms link between drug trade and extremist violence in south

By Elijah Felice Rosales, Business Mirror | November 29, 2017 Shadow economies, particularly illegal-drugs trade, have financed extremist groups with their terror activities in Mindanao, leading to the explosion of violence in the country’s southern island, a study by a peace organization said. A report, titled “Conflict Alert 2017,” by the International Alert said the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) “saw an explosion of violence” in 2016 in the face of the national elections and the rise of President Duterte, whose administration vowed to eradicate the country’s drug menace. According to the study, shadow economies have primarily caused the…Read more

PRESS RELEASE: Explosion of violence in Muslim Mindanao in 2016

Taguig City, 29 November 2017—Violence in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) reached unprecedented levels in 2016, providing a preview of what would happen in 2017. This is according to Conflict Alert, a subnational conflict monitoring system developed by peacebuilding organization International Alert Philippines. Conflict Alert, which launched its 2017 report today, tracks the incidence, causes, and human costs of violent conflict in Mindanao. It has the largest database on subnational conflict, containing more than 40,000 violent conflict incidents gathered from police reports, print media, and community sources. The latest report highlights an 89% year-on-year increase in violent conflict…Read more