Thousands of people still homeless two years after the after armed conflict broke out in Marawi City, the International Committee of the Red Cross said on Wednesday.
“Despite the numerous aid efforts that have truly helped those in need over the two years, the people of Marawi have grown tired and frustrated. They want to stand on their own feet again and stop depending on assistance,” said Martin Thalmann, head of the ICRC delegation in the Philippines.
The Maute terrorist group attack in May 2017 resulted in the killing of around 1,100 people, mostly militant gunmen, and displacing nearly 360,000 people.
The ICRC stated that the deep scars left by the 2017 conflict on Marawi City, Lanao del Sur in southern Philippines, continue to haunt over 100,000 people who still do not have a home to return to.
“Whether they’ve been living with relatives or are in evacuation centers and transition sites, the displaced people of Marawi struggle for access to potable water, viable livelihood opportunities and most importantly, permanent shelters,” it stated.
Thalmann noted that the authorities were trying to address complex issues so that the rehabilitation of the most affected area could begin.
But the conflict has left more vulnerable groups, such as families of missing people and victims of violence, with “invisible” scars, he said.