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ZAMBOANGA CITY, Philippines – As the sea swallowed the sun during the 7th day of clashes on Sunday, September 15, areas near the battle zone turned into a ghost town.
Dogs and cats roamed the empty streets. Some establishments took the risk and opened their shops to sell food and water. They closed at 8 pm, the start of the city-wide curfew.
Philippine flags made of paper were also displayed in some houses. Other residents lit candles outside their homes.
A group of children waved at us and pointed at a poster showing the Philippine flag with an inscription, “peace not war.”
“Gracias,” the children said after I showed them their pictures with the poster.
As the residents prepared to sleep, a fire broke out in sito Lustre, Barangay Sta Catalina. Children spent the night with sounds of sporadic gunfire and explosions.
Everyone wants to wake up from this nightmare called war. – Rappler.com