Last month, ISIS-linked militants attempted to establish South East Asia’s first Islamic State caliphate on the southern Philippines island of Mindanao. What followed was a bid from the Philippines armed forces to crush the militants and reestablish order.
Hundreds of well-equipped militants showed up to join the battle, which has entered its fifth week. More accustomed to jungle fighting than urban warfare, battling in the city’s streets is proving harder than expected.
VICE News gained exclusive access to embed with the Philippines special forces to learn about the realities of war on the front lines of Marawi.