PHILIPPINE National Police chief, Director General Oscar D. Albayalde yesterday confirmed the death of Marawi City siege leader Owaydah Marohombsar alias ‘Abu Dar’ following a gunbattle with security forces in Tuburan, Lanao del Sur last March 14.
“The PNP welcomes the confirmation of the reported death of Owaydah Marohombsar alias Abu Dar, the leader of the Dawlah Islamiya of the Lanao area who figured prominently in the infamous Marawi siege in 2017. Abu Dar was among five terrorists killed in an encounter with government security forces last March 14 in Tubaran, Lanao del Sur,” the PNP chief told newsmen at Camp Crame.
The suspect was identified as a result of a DNA testing conducted by forensic experts from the United States.
“This is a significant development in the government’s continuing campaign against terrorism and domestic threat groups because Abu Dar is among Abu Sayyaf/Dawlah Islamiya leaders who are aspiring for ISIS recognition as new emir to succeed the late Isnilon Hapilon,” said Gen. Albayalde.
Dar was said to have escaped shortly before government troops regained control of Marawi City from Maute Group and Abu Sayyaf terrorists who laid siege to the once beautiful city in 2017.
He was previously regarded as the successor of Isnilon Hapilon, the Abu Sayyaf leader who was killed in Marawi City along with the Maute brothers.
Dar and three other terrorists were shot dead in an encounter with soldiers in Tuburan, Lanao del Sur last March 14. Recovered from the slain suspects’ possession were a cache of high-powered weapons including an M-16 automatic rifle, a caliber .45 pistol, two grenades, an M653 rifle and dozens of magazines and live ammunition.
However, two soldiers were killed while four were wounded during the clash.