Christian Contruction Workers in the Philippines Escape After Three Weeks of Hiding During Attacks

ICC Note

Marawi City in the Philippines has been under attack since May 23rd, headed up by an extremists group called the Maute group. A group of five, Christian construction workers and five, Muslim police officers hid out in a basement in the town over from Marawi City. The construction workers were working on a job in Barangay village, a town over, that started before the attack started three weeks ago, and the police officers found the basement during the attacks. After they ran out of food, the ten men decided to attempt an escape. They ran out of the basement together and were immediately shot at, and two of the five construction workers were hit in the leg but kept running and successfully escaped.

06/13/2017 The Philippines (ABC News) – The team are from a neighbouring province and had the misfortune to be hired on a job in Marawi before extremists took the town on May 23.

“We were hiding in the house of the Barangay village chief,” said one of the men, Jenniver Velazques.

The Philippine military dropped bombs right across the area where they were hiding.

“They fell right beside us,” Mr Velazques said.

“All the windows in the house were broken.

The workers — including a 16-year-old boy — are all Christians and knew they would be executed if the Islamist extremists caught and questioned them.

The fighters have posted online videos of the murders of Christians and government workers that they had captured.

“We thought it would be our end,” said Gerald Docallos, who has two young children, including a three-month-old baby.

They survived on tins of sardines, meatloaf and corned beef, and drums of water that were stored near their construction site.

They were with a group of five Marawi policemen who had been trapped by the fighting.

The policemen are Muslims, but they too would have been murdered by the fighters who have pledged allegiance to IS.

“We came out yesterday. When we came out all of us went out together. We climbed up the wall jumped over to the other side onto the road.

“As soon as we hit the ground we were shot at — that’s why my companions have wounds.

“When we came out of the house we were wearing civilian clothes, white shirts, when we jumped over the wall we were shouting ‘Allahu Akhbar’ so they would not touch us — but they still shot at us. My brother was hit.

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