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Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 14 December 2018

Ramadan in Marawi, Philippines - in pictures

A year after ISIS loyalists took over the city, many residents are still displaced

With their homes destroyed and their properties looted or burned, thousands of families displaced during the siege of Marawi in May last year, Ramadan brings a wave of painful memories since ISIS loyalists, Maute and Abu Sayyaf, took over large parts of the city.

Muslims all over the world, including those in the southern Philippines, stocked up on groceries last week as they began the holy month.

With an estimated 27,000 families still living in evacuation centres, many wonder when they can go home. About half of the city's infrastructure was destroyed during the five-month long battle and martial law continues to be in place across Mindanao.

Read more: Slow signs of life return to Marawi after months of fighting

Philippine president Rodrigo Duterte visited Marawi again this month pledging to provide amnesty for Maute rebels who are willing to surrender.

Mr Duterte did not make any visit to the evacuees, whose concerns remains whether reconstruction will be channelled into building an industrial zone and another military camp rather than restoring their homes and businesses to its original state.

Government authorities estimates that residents can start rebuilding their houses in 2020.