Bounty for Maute leader Abu Dar raised to ₱6M

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, June 22) — Abu Dar, the elusive leader of the ISIS-linked Maute terror group, now has a ₱6-million bounty on his head.

The reward money was raised from ₱3 million, Joint Task Force Ranao Deputy Commander Col. Romeo Brawner said Friday.

"Nag-ambagan ang mga lokal na opisyal ng Lanao del Sur para mabuo ang ₱6 milyong pabuya (Lanao del Sur officials pitched in for the P6 million reward money)," the task force said in a statement.

The raising of bounty further confirms that Abu Dar was not among the five Maute gunmen killed in the terror group's firefight against government troops in Lanao del Sur last Sunday.

Brawner said Abu Dar was last spotted in the towns of Tubaran and Pagayawan in Lanao del Sur.

Abu Dar was among the Maute leaders who was recorded on video in a planning session that authorities believe was for the attack on Marawi City.

Terrorists stormed Marawi City, the capital of Lanao del Sur, on May 23 last year, triggering a five-month war that left more than a thousand people dead, most of them local and foreign militants. The violence displaced nearly 360,000 residents and left the mosque-studded city in ruins.

Malacañang said the presence of the remaining Maute group members is not a cause for alarm since Mindanao is still under Martial Law and the extremist group has become smaller.