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Philippines resort "on lockdown" following reports of gunshots, explosions

Resorts World Manila (Image via Google Maps)
Resorts World Manila (Image via Google Maps)

Witnesses have reported gunshots and explosions at a shopping centre, casino and hotel complex near Manila's international airport in the Philippines capital.

Police rushed to the Resorts World Manila complex in the early hours of Friday after gunshots rang out at the complex, where smoke began billowing from the upper floor of the building.

Officers have not given details about the incident but have begun cordoning off the area near the Ninoy Aquino International Airport.

Resorts World Manila said on its Facebook page that it was "currently on lockdown following reports of gunfire from unidentified men," adding that "the company is working closely with the Philippine National Police to ensure that all guests and employees are safe".

"We ask for your prayers during these difficult times," the company said.

"I heard many, many gunshots," Julio Silva, a witness who managed to dash out of the mall complex, told the DZMM radio network.

The incident is unfolding amid a deadly 10-day siege by Muslim militants aligned to the Islamic State group in the southern city of Marawi.

The attack has sparked fears that the militants may attack elsewhere to divert the focus of thousands of troops trying to quell the siege.