On May 23, 2017, majority of our forces under the operational command of the Western Mindanao Command (WesMinCom) were conducting Focused Military Operations (FMO) against communist terrorists at a distance of about 30 kilometers from Marawi City.
Our forces in Marawi City consisted of a handful of soldiers, most of them were part of the combined units that were tasked to capture Hapilon, the rest were garrison personnel assigned to the Headquarters of the 103rd Infantry (Haribon) Brigade in Camp Ranao and other detachments located around Marawi City.
When the crisis erupted, the Commander of WesMinCom, LT GEN CARLITO GALVEZ JR ordered to shift focus on fighting the enemy in Marawi City. As the crisis progressed, reinforcements were received coming from various parts of the country, such as: Infantry Battalions based in Luzon and the Visayas, who were deployed to Mindanao for the first time, and armored vehicles and crews from the Mechanized Infantry Division (MID) based in the Province of Tarlac.
Aside from Philippine Army (PA) units, forces were also complemented by units coming from the Philippine Navy (PN), and the Philippine Air Force (PAF). Counterparts from the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) also came to Marawi City to augment all the efforts directed at liberating the city.
With so many units being deployed in the City of Marawi, an entity was created that would integrate, synchronize, orchestrate, and manage all the combined efforts needed to liberate it. This gave rise to the creation of the Joint Task Force Marawi under the leadership of BGen Rolando Bautista and his deputy BGen Alex Macario. This was created along with its subordinate functional cells and Joint Task Groups (JTGs).
(This entry is part of Chapter 2: Marawi Crisis.)