Exclusive: Military video shows suspected remains of Marawi siege financier Malaysian Mahmud Ahmad

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, October 26) — The bodies of Marawi siege financier and Malaysian militant Dr. Mahmud Ahmad and his wife are believed to be among the 50 found under a collapsed building in the war-torn city.

 

The video obtained by CNN Philippines from military sources on Thursday shows two bodies lying in the rubble after government forces launched an offensive against the ISIS-inspired local terror group Maute.

Military sources said that near Ahmad are the remains of a woman believed to be his wife, but the woman cannot be seen in the video.

CNN Philippines showed the video to Joint Task Force Marawi Commander Major General Danilo Pamonag who confirmed that one of the bodies in the clip is indeed believed to be Ahmad.

"It looks like him. 'Yung features nu'ng hindi pa decomposed, looks like a foreigner. Nu'ng last few days din diyan na sila nagtatago," he said.

The military first reported that the wanted Malaysian national may have been killed on October 19. President Rodrigo Duterte and Armed Forces of the Philippines Spokesperson Major General Restituto Padilla confirmed Ahmad's death the next day.

Among the effects found in the debris was a letter signed by Ahmad to his wife, Humaira. In the letter dated August 13, he expressed his love for her. He said his "beloved wife" should not worry about the baby she is carrying. He also asked her to pray for him.

Letter_CNNPH.jpg  

Full text of the letter:

My dear beloved wife… May Allah <unintelligible> be with u all. How are you there beloved? Always make urself close to Allah overtime ya! I received your letter from Ubaidulld few days before, Miss u baby ko. I heard about ur situation there and anyway Alhamdulillah  u are still in good condition. Though I am worried thinking about u all, anyway Allah will be closer to you than me. I am just a small dot in your heart. :) Baby ko, pray for the best of all don’t worry about  our baby in your tummy, Allah will protect if He wills. I know you might be sad on what happen to our friend in Landbank. But all that is the plan of The Almighty. Hoping and praying we will meet them again in Paradise again InSyaAllah. My love, you know my weakness, only you and Allah know my strength, I need ur prayers for me, I tried not to c cry too much but u know how weak my feeling is, especially when we lost those syuhada. I become more malungkut, I wish Allah forgive my sins and make u my strength. Take care my love and give my Salam to all.

Love u my beloved wife... Humaira!

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Ahmad, who is also known among extremist groups as Abu Handzalah, was said to be in charge of recruiting fighters, and a point person for foreigners wanting to join extremist forces in the Philippines, according to  the Jakarta-based Institute for Policy Analysis of Conflict (IPAC).

He was a former Islamic Studies professor at the Universiti Malaya in Malaysia who trained at an Al-Qaeda camp in Afghanistan in the late 1990s while studying in Pakistan.

Ahmad fled to the Philippines in 2014 when Malaysian authorities exposed him as an extremist.

On October 23, exactly five months since the war in Marawi erupted, the Philippine government declared the end of five months of fighting in the city and victory against Southeast Asia's "most serious threat of violent extremism."