CBCP belies 'fake news' on prelate denouncing terror leaders' death

By Ferdinand Patinio

October 17, 2017, 7:46 pm

MANILA -- The Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) cried foul over a viral post claiming that its president Archbishop Socrates Villegas condemns the killing of top terrorist leaders Isnilon Hapilon and Omar Maute in Marawi City, tagging it as fake news.

“Once more, CBCP is the hapless victim of fake news. Going viral on social media is a 'report' that the CBCP regrets the killing of Messrs. Isnilon Hapilon and Omar Maute. The CBCP never made such a statement,” Villegas said in a text message to reporters Tuesday.

Earlier on Tuesday, the post, which went viral on social media, claimed that the CBCP president condemns the death of the two terrorist leaders.

Villegas belied the said post, noting that the CBCP, in fact, is lauding government forces for their efforts to free the war-torn city.

“On the contrary, we laud the gallantry of our soldiers and their heroic efforts to free Marawi,” he said.

The Lingayen-Dagupan prelate added that they are willing to help the government restore the city.

“We will gladly join government in rebuilding the city in the measure we are able. We pray for all the dead, and for lasting peace in Mindanao,” Villegas said.

President Rodrigo Duterte on Tuesday declared Marawi City liberated from the clutches of the Maute group, a day after Hapilon and Maute were confirmed to be killed during the ongoing battle between government troops and the terrorist group. (PNA)