News In Brief

Many towns on Mindanao in rebel grip, Marcos says

President Ferdinand Marcos admitted Tuesday for the first time that ''many'' towns on the southern Philippines island of Mindanao were under rebel control. ''Mindanao is in a state of anxiety,'' the President said in a speech to ruling party members elected to parliament last month.

Mr. Marcos hinted that martial law, lifted in 1981, might ''happen all over again if we don't watch out.'' He declared martial law in 1972, citing a growing communist rebellion and leftist and rightist conspiracies to topple his regime.

It was the second time in four days Marcos had warned of communist rebellion. On Saturday, he said units of the communist New People's Army were operating at batallion size and that their ranks were swelling.

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