US special forces are helping the Armed Forces of the Philippines end a siege by Islamist fighters in the south of the country. The battle for the Philippine city of Marawi is in its third week.
“The presence of our US counterparts facilitates the exchange of intelligence, subject matter exchanges and provides training exchanges,” said Philippine military spokesman, Jo-Ar Herrera.
The Philippine military aims to retake the town from the ISIL-linked Maute group before Monday, the country’s independence day.
The taking of Marawi has alarmed southeastern nations which fear ISIL is establishing a stronghold in The Philippines that could threaten the region.