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DILG: Threat from Maute, Abu Sayyaf on Nazarene feast possible.

Interior Secretary Ismael 'Mike' Sueno said Thursday that there was a possible terror threat during the Feast of the Black Nazarene in Manila on January 9.

'Well ang threat alam niyo naman ang Maute group at tsaka maybe 'yung Abu Sayyaf but mainly the Maute group, they are connected with the ISIS (Islamic State in Iraq and Syria),' Sueno told reporters in a Palace briefing.

(There is threat possibly from the Maute group and the Abu Sayyaf, but more likely from the Maute group which is connected with the ISIS.)

He also confirmed the presence of some members of the Maute group in Metro Manila, citing intelligence reports.

He said the extremist group might retaliate after a leader of suspected sympathizers of the Islamic State group, identified as Jaafar Maguid, was killed in a shootout in Saranggani on Thursday.

''Yun lang baka mag retaliate (They might retaliate). That's why we have to double, triple our security,' he said.

Despite the terror threat, Sueno said the government would not advise the cancelation of the 'traslacion' or the yearly procession.

'No, I do not think the government will advise for the cancellation of this traditional practice, which has long been done many years ago. We will just try our best to really keep our people safe,' he said.

The Cabinet official said state forces will 'help contain or maintain peace and order' during the procession, which is expected to draw about 15 to 18 million Catholic devotees.

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Publication:Philippines Daily Inquirer (Makati City, Philippines)
Date:Jan 5, 2017
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