|Participant in the Moro conflict|
|Headquarters||Butig, Lanao del Sur|
|Area of operations||Mindanao, Philippines|
|Originated as||Khilafah Islamiyah Movement|
|Battles and wars||2016 Butig clash|
The Maute group is an armed Islamist group composed of former Moro Islamic Liberation Front guerrillas and some foreign fighters led by Abdullah Maute, the alleged founder of a Dawlah Islamiya, or Islamic state based in Lanao del Sur, Mindanao, Philippines. The group figured in a clash with Philippine Army troops in February 2016 that ended with the capture of their headquarters in Butig, Lanao del Sur. There are reports that Omar Maute, Abdullah's brother, was killed in that clash. There are also reports to the contrary, claiming that he escaped before the camp was overrun and is still alive. Since then the group, which a Philippine Army brigade commander characterized as terrorist, has been conducting a protection racket in the remote settlements of Butig.
Philippine Army sources state that their initial encounter with the Maute group involved a firefight in 2013 when the insurgents attacked a security checkpoint the government troops were manning in Madalum, Lanao del Sur. The group is thought to have over 100 members and were supplied with equipment by a foreign terrorist. They are said to be affiliated with Jemaah Islamiya, a Southeast Asian Islamist terrorist group.
Although some reports indicate that the Maute group is regularly seen carrying black flags bearing the insignia of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, Butig town mayor Ibrahim Macadato has stated that the group is not affiliated with ISIS, but are merely armed residents. However, training manuals and other documents for militants under the Islamic State were recovered from their captured camp, indicating that the group may be trying to link up with ISIS.
Butig, the headquarters of the Maute group, is also a stronghold of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front and both groups are tied by blood or marriage. Brothers Omar and Abdullah Maute are first cousins of Azisa Romato, the wife of the late MILF Vice Chairman for Military Affairs Alim Abdul Aziz Mimbantas, who is buried in Butig. The Maute brothers themselves were once members of the MILF.
The Maute group is said to be actively recruiting minors for service as child warriors and using the non-passage of the Bangsamoro Basic Law as propaganda. In April 2016, they abducted six sawmill workers from Butig, two of whom were later found beheaded.
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