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    Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte gestures as he answers questions from reporters during a press conference

    Philippine President Asks Lawmakers to Fund Increase in Troops by 20,000 People

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    Senate minority leader Franklin Drilon said that Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte called on the country's Senate and House of Representatives to support budgetary funding for additional 20,000 soldiers in the military.

    MOSCOW(Sputnik) — Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte called on the country's Senate and House of Representatives to support budgetary funding for additional 20,000 soldiers in the military in order to combat the terrorist threat, posed by the Islamic State terrorist group (Daesh) on the southern island of Mindanao, Senate minority leader Franklin Drilon said Wednesday.

    According to the CNN Philippines broadcaster, Duterte held a meeting with the lawmakers on Tuesday evening, informing them about the terrorist threat and the IS plans to carry out the attacks in Mindanao. The broadcaster added, citing Drilon, that the president urged lawmakers to agree on increase in troops by 20,000 new soldiers.

    "He informed us of that renewed threat because the secretary of national defense has requested for additional manpower, and, therefore, that would require budgetary allocation," Drilon said, as quoted by the broadcaster.

    The martial law was declared in Mindanao in May after the outbreak of the conflict between the Philippine security forces and the Islamic extremists, affiliated with Daesh, including the Maute and Abu Sayyaf jihadist groups. In May, the Mauete group attempted to storm the city of Marawi on the Mindanao island and the clashes has already led to the deaths of 100 people. On July 22, the Philippine lawmakers approved the extension of the martial law in the southern Mindanao region until December 31, 2017, as requested earlier by Duterte.

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