Calida: 20 ISIS cell groups lurking in Mindanao

Image from Batang North Cotabato's Facebook account
  • Solicitor general said 20 terror cells operating in Mindanao
  • He said these cells coordinating with ISIS-affiliated groups to establish Islamic caliphate
  • He also claimed they are responsible for more than 40 terror attacks

MANILA, Philippines – Solicitor General Jose Calida has revealed the identities of 20 groups purportedly working with the Mautes and other extremists to establish an Islamic caliphate in Mindanao.

In his memorandum filed with the Supreme Court, Calida identified the 20 cells as follows:

  • Ansar Dawiah Fi Filibbin
  • Rajah Solaiman Islamic Movement
  • Al Harakatul Islamiyah Battalion
  • Jama’at Ansar Khilafa
  • Ansharul Khilafah Philippines Battalion
  • Bangsamoro Justice Movement
  • Khilafah Islamiya Mindanao h. Abu Sayyaf Group (Sulu faction)
  • Syuful Khilafa Fi Luzon
  • Ma’rakah Al-Ansar Battalion
  • Dawla Islamiyyah Cotabato
  • Dawlat Al Islamiyah Waliyatul Masrik
  • Ansar Al-Shariyah Battalion
  • Jamaah al-Tawhid wal Jihad Philippines
  • Abu Dujanah Battalion
  • Abu Khubayn Battalion
  • Jundallah Battalion
  • Abu Sadr Battalion
  • Jamaah Al Muhajirin wal Anshor
  • Balik-Islam Group

According to Calida, these cells were collaborating with other Islamic State-affiliated groups such as the Mautes, Ansarul Khilafah Philippines (AKP), the Abu Sayyaf, and the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) to dismember Mindanao from the republic.

“These ISIS-linked local rebel groups and ISIS cell groups have conducted violent activities, particularly in the areas of Basilan, Sulu, Tawi-Tawi, Zamboanga and Davao, not merely to sow terror amongst the populace, but to splinter the country. They have the capability of conducting bomb attacks in any area of Mindanao,” GMA News quoted his memorandum as saying.

The Solicitor General also claimed these groups have been responsible for more than 40 terror attack incidents.

“This year alone, these groups have been responsible for at least 43 violent attacks employing improvised explosive devices (IED), harassment, and kidnapping.”

Calida, the government’s top lawyer, is currently tasked with defending President Rodrigo Duterte’s justification for declaring martial law before the high tribunal.