Philippines: US DNA tests confirm death of IS-linked leader

  • Philippines: US DNA tests confirm death of IS-linked leader

Philippines: US DNA tests confirm death of IS-linked leader

"We are monitoring who will replace Dar", added defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana at a press conference over the weekend.

Believed to be killed was Owayda Benito Marohombsar, also known as Abu Dar, who was suspected by the military intelligence officials to be the emir of the Islamic State (IS) in Southeast Asia. "We will not rest until we neutralize all the other remnants of this terrorist group", said Col. Romeo Brawner Jr., Commander of the 103rd Infantry "Haribon" Brigade.

A native of Pagayawan, a fifth-class town of 13,000 in Lanao del Sur province, Marohombsar saw action only in skirmishes with government forces in the province's Butig town before the Marawi siege.

"We thank our United States counterparts and the citizens of Lanao Del Sur for helping us neutralize the last remaining leader of the Maute-ISIS Group in the person of Abu Dar".

"Meantime they (DI) are leaderless and disorganized".

This comes a month after the military announced that the elusive leader was among the fighters killed in a clash in Tubaran, Lanao del Sur on March 14.

Brawner explained that there were indications that the body recovered was that of Dar such as the scar and circumstantial evidence like the gun retrieved from the body, a Croatian made caliber.45, a tablet, cellphones, and cash.

It was hard to determine Marohombsar's identity by face because one of the bodies "was deformed", Brawner said.

Scene of the Crime Operatives (SOCO) took a nail sample from the body which was compared to the DNA of his family or relatives.

He is regarded as the successor of brothers Omar and Abdullah Maute, who were killed in the siege of Marawi, the Army unit added.