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1 more year: Duterte wants Congress to extend martial law anew


By Prince Golez

President Rodrigo Duterte has called on Congress to extend martial law in Mindanao for at least one more year, Executive Secretary Salvador Panelo confirmed on Friday.

“It’s the (Senate President) and Speaker who would call for a joint session probably on the President’s request for the extension of martial,” Medialdea said.

Senate President Vicente Sotto III earlier revealed that Duterte, who declared martial law in Mindanao for 60 days after the Islamic State-affiliated Maute group attacked Marawi City on May 23, 2017, “might call for (a joint session of Congress) on Wednesday, December 12.”

“But nothing is concrete until I receive his letter,” Sotto told reporters.

The Senate leader said the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) will brief the senators on their recommendation on Monday.

“Monday morning may briefing kami from AFP. I’m still waiting for the President’s letter re joint session,” he added.

This is the third time Duterte asked the Senate and the House of Representatives to convene in a joint session to deliberate on martial law extension.

In July last year, the President called upon Congress to extend his proclamation of martial law and the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus in the entire Mindanao until December 31, 2017.

In December 2017, he requested both houses to extend anew the imposition of martial law in the region from January 1, 2018 to December 31, 2018.