Jakarta. Indonesia is bracing for a "spillover" from what appears to be an end to a battle between security forces and Islamist militants in southern Philippines, a ministry spokesman said on Wednesday (18/10).
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte on Tuesday said militants sympathetic to the Islamic State have finally been ousted from Marawi city, after nearly five months of battle, according to media reports.
The Philippine military said up to 30 fighters remained after the battle that reportedly drew militants from neighboring countries.
According to Foreign Ministry spokesman Arrmanatha Nasir, Indonesian police and counterterrorism officials are coordinating with Philippine authorities to prevent the spill of militants into the country.
"Indonesia welcomes the result, which also couldn't be separated from our trilateral cooperation," Arrmanatha said, referring to Duterte's announcement.
Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines launched joint air patrols last week and maritime patrols earlier in June and this month, seeking to curb the movement of Islamist militants in the region.
More than 1,000 people, mostly militants, were killed in the battle in Marawi, and Arrmanatha said the Philippine military had suggested that among them were Indonesian fighters.
"They're yet to identify those fighters, if some of them were indeed from Indonesia," he said.