Hello Rappler readers,
Below are the big stories you shouldn't miss.
Abu Sayyaf beheads 2 Vietnamese hostages
Hoang Trung Thong and Hoang Va Hai, who were among the abducted crew members of a Vietnamese cargo vessel, have been beheaded by the Abu Sayyaf. A resident found the two Vietnamese hostages' decapitated remains in Sumisip, Basilan.
Some governors, mayors in Mindanao lose power over police
The National Police Commission stripped 7 governors and 132 mayors in Mindanao of their power to supervise local police. According to Napolcom, these governors and mayors "failed to impose measures to suppress terroristic acts and prevent lawless violence" in their areas.
Businesses agree with SC ruling on martial law
The Mindanao Business Council told Rappler that it thinks the Supreme Court's decision to uphold martial law in the region is "necessary." The group's chairperson Vicente Lao said this would help quell the terror threat in Mindanao.
NBI to probe Bilibid drug trade 'resurgence'
Is the illegal drug trade thriving again at the New Bilibid Prison? Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II has ordered the National Bureau of Investigation to check.
US confirms North Korea launched ICBM
The United States confirmed North Korea has test launched an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) for the first time. Pyongyang's state media reported that North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un called the missile "a gift" to "American bastards" on US Independence Day.