The Armed Forces of the Philippines’ Western Command (AFP Wescom) said recently it will step up its information drive in Balabac, the province’s southernmost gateway, to raise public awareness there against violent extremism.
Wescom chief Lt. Gen. Rozzano Briguez told Palawan News he will personally visit the island town with Palawan Governor Jose Alvarez to engage local officials and religious leaders.
Rozzano said he will specifically give a talk about the impacts of violent extremism to the community, with the Marawi siege as the example.
“We want them to understand the ill-effects of violent extremism and gain their support to counter that,” he said in a recent interview.
Part of his presentation, he added, is helping local leaders determine the early stages of violent extremism, so they can preempt it by reporting right away to the armed authorities.
Briguez said they were in Bataraza last April to hold the same campaign. He added that they focus this effort in southern Palawan as they have identified it to be the possible gateway of violent extremists.